Red Velvet Cake

This is the cake I started making when I was twelve. It has what I consider the real frosting, a delicate yet rich buttercream. The procedure is a bit finicky. You make a sauce from flour and milk, whisking furiously, so it doesn't get lumpy, then chill it. Add gradually to whipped butter and powdered sugar until creamy beautiful consistency. It's not overly sweet, but a perfect compliment to the cake.
By / Photography By Mark Boughton | October 26, 2015

Ingredients

Cake
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
  • 2 tablespoons red food coloring
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
Frosting
  • 1 1/3 cups 2 percent reduced-fat milk
  • 7 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/3 cups salted butter, softened
  • 1 1/3 to 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease three 8-inch layer pans or two 9-inch layer pans; line bottoms with wax paper.
  2. In a mixing bowl, beat together vegetable shortening and sugar. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour alternately with buttermilk; beat until blended. In a small bowl, whisk cocoa and food coloring together with a fork until smooth; add to batter and beat until evenly blended. In same bowl, dissolve baking soda in vinegar and beat into batter. Pour into prepared pans and spread evenly; bake 8-inch layers 20 minutes or 9-inch layers 25 minutes, or until a tester inserted in middle comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pans on wire racks. Remove cakes from pans, peel off wax paper and cool completely on racks. 
  3. To prepare frosting, whisk milk and flour until dissolved. Pour into a small saucepan; cook and stir over low heat 2 to 3 minutes or until thick. Cool to room temperature. 
  4. In a mixing bowl, beat butter until creamy. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Add powdered sugar and beat until smooth and creamy; beat in vanilla. Fill and frost cake. 

Ingredients

Cake
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
  • 2 tablespoons red food coloring
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
Frosting
  • 1 1/3 cups 2 percent reduced-fat milk
  • 7 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/3 cups salted butter, softened
  • 1 1/3 to 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
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