Red Velvet Cake

I really hate to do this to you. But I just have to. This is somewhat of a teaser post but I hope you will forgive me. Do you see that scrumptious cake right above? The one with the cream cheese frosting with chopped pecans. Well, that is THE BEST and I do mean THE BEST Red Velvet Cake EVER!!!!

And I made it.

Every holiday or family gathering during my childhood, my aunt would make this cake. Unfortunately, I was not always a fan. I think the bright red color to the cake stumped me and I didn't even try it for a long time. But when I did, that was it. That was my most requested dish (along with her cornbread stuffing). I even had my dad bring me this cake when he came to visit me for my birthday..... he came 3000 miles mind you. That is how serious this cake is. It is very moist, with a hint of chocolate and oh my the pecans in the cream cheese frosting. YUMMY!!! I'm getting so excited just writing about it.

Well my aunt finally gave me and my mom her most treasured recipe for Red Velvet cake. She gave it to us last year but I have always been too intimidated to make it. You see, I consider myself more of a cook rather than a baker so some desserts seem challenging. So I knew I was going to be so disappointed if I didn't live up to the expectation I had for this cake. But I will never have that fear again. This cake was awesome. I had to take half the cake to work and share with co-workers because there was no need for Mr. Foodie and I to eat the entire cake (although he put a very nice dent in what I did leave at our house). The cake received rave reviews. Did I tell you how good this cake is??

So I called this a teaser post because...I can't give you my aunt's recipe. She will probably die if I put it out there for the world to see. Well, not literally but I don't want to take any chances (my mom and I really did have to beg her for this recipe). So I hope you won't be too mad at me. I know I've gone on and on about this cake for the past three paragraphs but I want to try and make it up to you. I will post a recipe from Paula Deen. Although I haven't actually made the Paula Deen version, the recipe and ingredients are similar. And if you are at all familiar with Paula Deen you know how much she loves her butter and sugar so I have faith that it will be good. Not as good as my Aunt's, but I'm biased.
Red Velvet Cupcakes

Printable Recipe

For the Cake:
2 ½ cups all purpose flour
1 ½ cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1 ½ cups vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 tablespoons red food coloring
1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Frosting
1 pound cream cheese, softened
2 sticks butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 cup of chopped pecans (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 (12 tin cup) muffin pans with cupcake papers (or you can lightly butter and flour three cake pans for a layered cake such as the one I made)

In a medium mixing bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt and cocoa powder. In a large bowl, gently beat the vegetable oil, buttermilk, eggs, red food coloring, vinegar and vanilla extract with an electric mixer. Add the sifted dry ingredients to the wet ingredients until smooth and thoroughly combined.

Divide the batter among the cupcake tins, about 2/3 filled (or evenly in the cake pans). Bake in the oven for 20-22 minutes (or 35-40 minutes if using cake pans), turning the pans once, halfway through. Test the cupcakes (cakes) for doneness using a toothpick. It is done when the toothpick comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool completely before frosting

For the Frosting:
In a large mixing bowl, beat with cream cheese, butter and vanilla with an electric mixer until smooth. Add the sugar on low, 1 cup at a time, and beat until incorporated. Increase the speed to high and mix until light and fluffy.
If using pecans, fold them into frosting when the cupcakes (cake) are cooled, spread the frosting using a metal spatula.

from Paula Deen, foodnetwork.com

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