Saturday, February 19, 2011

Red Velvet Valentine

Last week, knowing that the obligatory-day-of-love-expression was upon us, I figured it was high time to try making a Manitoba favourite- Red Velvet Cake.

Yes, it's as red as it looks.  Mmm.
The creation of these puppies made my kitchen look an awful lot like one of Dexter's kill rooms...
I've been meaning to try out a recipe for this cake for a long while.  I first tried red velvet cake at Guildy's, a delicious and very popular little eatery at work.  I've also seen it featured at Salisbury House... which may be the only thing I eat from there ever again.

One thing I've been made clear on: red velvet cake should be MOIST.  So, as with most of my food experiments, I Googled my way to this recipe (yay, fellow Blogspot user!)  The title for her post caught my eye:  The BEST Red Velvet Cake Recipe ~Easy, Homemade, Moist with Southern Flair~.  It did not disappoint.  I did make a bit of a mistake, though... I accidentally added double the amount of coffee called for.  Oops.  As a result, you COULD taste the coffee a little bit in the end product, but it was still mostly red velvet goodness.

Baking.  I really should clean my oven window...
I was originally going to debut my efforts during a baby shower/potluck held yesterday... but then decided that my coworkers have been guniea pigs often enough for my baking efforts.  Not that they mind... but for a baby shower, I wanted to be sure I was putting my best foot forward.  So, my American Sign Language 102 class got to be the taste testers this time during our class on Valentine's day.

Cooling cupcakes.  The two crackly-looking ones in the front are the sugar-free versions I made for my two diabetic classmates.  That's the joy of Splenda.... hooray for measuring cup-for-cup!  It did result in a bit of a different texture, though (Jarred let me have a bite of his)
Valentines Day-themed frosting (these later got a cinnamon heart decoration as well)
The diabetic cupcakes again- no cinnamon heart, just a drop of food colouring for decoration (and a sprinkling of Splenda on top-- I accidentally added far too little to the actual icing.  Still tasted okay, though)

For the actual baby shower, held for our genetic assistant Lisa, I decorated with a different cream cheese icing (found here).  I will confess: I didn't like this one as much as the one included in the cupcake recipe.  The icing was lighter, but also very soft (probably because of the whipping cream, and also due to my reluctance to add SIX CUPS of icing sugar).  It didn't really set up nicely.  It also made A TON, probably enough for twice as many cupcakes.  I probably won't use it again myself, though my coworkers seemed to like it quite a bit.  Now, I'm left with the problem of having leftover icing in the fridge... this could end badly.

Cupcakes again: same recipe, but in opaque silver wrappers, with the softer whipped icing piped into a spiral on top.  Blue sprinkles, since Lisa knows she's got an XY bundle of joy on the way!
These sort of remind me of the cupcake dolls that my sisters and I had when we were younger.  I think it was Sar that had a cherry-scented one with a spiral frosting "hat".
Overall, the cupcakes seemed to be a hit with both classmates and coworkers.  One doc, who couldn't be at the potluck due to clinic, had one brought to him by Jess... and apparently proclaimed them "AMAZING".  I know he used to work as a cook, and he seems to be a gentleman of very discerning tastes, so that made my week!

Off to think of ways to use up that remaining frosting (without eating it straight with a spoon...)


  1. I really think you should get into food photography! Your pics are amazing and I know your food is too. It's too bad we're so far away!

  2. Thanks Laur!! Ever since you showed me your new camera, I've been pining after something better than the one I have. All the better to make "food porn", as Chaddy says...

  3. Off-topic, but I had a cupcake doll too! Tutti-frutti :)

  4. Not off-topic at all! Tutti-frutti was definitely the right one! My other sister Ni and I had ones with flatter frosting, and sprinkles.