Sunday, September 11, 2011

Red Velvet Cake

   Note 1: I think I should start learning how to take better photos. The thing is by the time I finish baking my energy is usually all but spent, so I'm too lazy to arrange things beautifully or think of a nicer way of presenting. So.

   Note 2: This entry was composed over a week ago. I'm getting lazy- need to buck up a bit!

   Goodness, I've so many pending posts! I'll never get through each and every one of them! The thing is, I'd like to write about everything that I make, since I probably won't have much a chance any more when I start working (if that ever happens, huh). Being me, though, I'd write one post and halfway through writing I'd suddenly remember another recipe that I tries and I'd start writing about that. Fickle-minded, I am, I guess. 

   One of the things that I've seen all over food blogs (apart from macarons, dulce de leche, rainbow cakes, etc.) are red velvet cakes. So ahem... I'd like to announce that I've made a red velvet cake!

I'm afraid this is the best photo that I managed to take.
I packed one slice for KakYong a.k.a. Big Sister to take back to her uni.
And no, it's not the photo that's upside down, it's the cake. So.
   To tell you the truth, I've never actually tasted one, either professionally-made or homemade. So I didn't know what to expect and at first was a teeny weeny little bit disappointed because I'd expect to jump through the roof after tasting it. I've read how delicious and extraordinary it is, but it tasted quiet normal. I think I should have another go at the recipe sometime soon (when oh when will that be?) to see if I missed anything.. Besides, like I said I've never tasted a red velvet cake before so I don't have anything to compare my cake to.

   I got the recipe from Kak Rima, whose blog is another that I haunt. She adapted it from another recipe, and her cake turned out such a beautiful red. Mine was a very dark red, pretty enough but not that eye-catching. At first I only made one, but the cake turned out a little too short to cut in two, so I made another one. When I decided to make another one, it was 3 a.m. in the morning, and I had two whoopie pie batters waiting to be dolloped into their pans. It was one crazy night. But since Little Sister was going back to Uni at 6 a.m., and Big Sister suggested that I make something to celebrate Mum's upcoming birthday while everyone was at home, I went through with it. So we ate cake at 5 a.m. in the morning (we were having sahur as we'd decide to fast today). Who eats cake at 5 a.m. in the morning???

   Mum thinks the texture should have been finer. The cake was rather dense, I guess. Maybe I should use superfine flour next time?

The cake batter. It's not that red. More like a very dark pink.
   Well, here's the recipe for the cake. I followed the recipe mostly, but made two cakes instead of one. 

   Credits to: Kak Rima and hersite

A. Sift these together and set aside
   1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
   1/2 teaspoon baking powder
   1/2 teaspoon salt

B. Combine these in one bowl
   1 tablespoon red food colouring
   1 tablespoon cocoa powder
   A few drops of water, in case the paste is too sticky

C. Combine these in one bowl
   1/2 teaspoon vinegar (I used HPA apple vinegar)
   1/2 teaspoon baking soda

D. Beat these using an electric mixer until light and fluffy
   1/4 cup butter
   3/4 cup sugar

   1 egg
   1 teaspoon vanilla essence/extract
   1/2 cup buttermilk (which I did not have, so substituted with 1/2 cup milk + 1/2 teaspoon apple vinegar)

   1. Preheat oven to 175C.
   2. Grease and line two 8-inch cake tins (I only had one. Kak Rima used a 6-inch pan) with baking paper. 
   3. Add the egg to D mixture and beat until well combined. 
   4. Add vanilla and B mixture and mix well combined.
   5. Add A and buttermilk alternately, starting with A (flour mixture) and ending with A. So A-B-A-B-A. Ababa. It's a word! Stir with a spatula until well blended. (I used the electric mixture. Did that affect the texture?)
   6. Pour into pans and bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted into the centre.
   7. Cool completely. Slice the top off one cake and spread with cream cheese filling. Top with the second cake. Cover cake with the rest of the cream cheese frosting. Decorate. Uh-huh.
   8. Chill in the refrigerator for several hours. It tastes better after doing that.
   We couldn't find whipping cream that has a 'Halal' logo on it, but Big Sister found this Non-Dairy Whipping Topping that has one. I wonder if I can use it as a substitute for recipes that calls for double cream or dairy whipping cream. It's so difficult to find any that is certified Halal. Besides, if I can use NDWT as a substitute, it'll be useful if I ever meet a person who's allergic to dairy products and want to serve them cake or dessert! (Cewwah.)

   So here's the recipe. I made one or two changes.


   1 cup Non-Dairy Whipping Cream Topping, whipped until stiff
   125 cream cheese
   50g butter
   60g powdered sugar

   Beat cream cheese and butter until well mixed. 
   Add sugar and beat until well combined.
   Fold in the whipped topping.
   Use to frost cake.

   Next time I'll either reduce the sugar to 2 or 3 tablespoons or omit it altogether! The frosting was a little too sweet, maybe because the NDWCT already contains a little sugar. (But Abuya a.k.a. Dad likes it. Of course. Dia kata macam kek beli. Cewwahhh!)
   I'd also increase the amount of cream cheese.
   The butter caused the mixture to have a pale, yellowish colour. At first I didn't like it, but it turned paler after some time. So.

Just out of the oven.
   *I read this one book a while back, and there was a character who liked to talk and end her sentences with 'so'. For example, "Red Velvet cake is red in colour. So." And this often leaves her son wondering what is supposed to come after the so. This fascinated me, which is why you see me using it here and there. So.

   My blog need more recipes. So. (Guess what's supposed to come after).

   Oh. And tomorrow Big Sister is returning to KL. So another day of baking. So. 

   Okay I'm overdoing it. I'll stop now. So. Hehe.

   Update: I think I've changed my mind. The cake is very good. Evidence: I finished an enormous slice (the last bits) all by myself. Dad loved it and has reminded me to make some more soon, and my brothers want me to make one for their Raya celebration at school. So.


  1. I think red velvet is meant to be a denser texture because it's quite a wet batter. Your colour has come out really well and I'm pleased you enjoyed it

  2. CC: I see... that explains it then. Thank you very much! :)

  3. Sumaiyyah

    akak jwb disini ya...tepung HK akan menghasilkan kek lapis yg lebih lembut & tak terlalu kasar/kering teksturenya as compared to regular flour. :)

    hope it helps..

  4. Hi Sumaiyyah! what a coincidence!! My friend has been telling me to make a red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting but like you.. i have not yet tasted one before and I haven't found a good recipe! so thanks for posting just in time! I hope I can try this cake out next time! I love cream cheese frosting~ did you have a lot leftover after icing the cake?

  5. Hey Tray! This was a pretty good recipe, but be sure to check out the original link.

    Well I made two cakes so there was just a about 1/4 cup frosting left, the recipe is actually for just one cake. I just followed the original amounts and it was just enough. The frosting is super duper good! ;)

  6. Sumaiyyah hello from Istanbul, like the name of a friend with the same name ...
    cake looks delicious ... I will follow you ...

  7. Hi Sevde, thanks! The cake was pretty good, you should try it if you haven't. Say hello to your friend for me ;)


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