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Red, White and Blue Velvet Cake

Posted By Nicole On July 2, 2007 @ 5:28 am In Cakes,Cakes - Frosting,Holidays,Recipes | 4 Comments

red, white and blue cake

The 4th of July is one of my favorite holidays, largely because I like both cookouts and fireworks and, assuming that you live in the US, you are virtually guaranteed to have access to both today. Hamburgers and hot dogs (meat or veggie) are top choices for grillers, and nothing complements them like some grilled corn on the cob, cold cole slaw or, if you want to keep things simple, some potato chips.

The recipe here makes two 9-inch round cakes. If you want your cake to be all one color (red or blue), then simply double the quantities and proceed, splitting the batter into two pans. I strongly recommend getting a paste-type food coloring rather than relying on the typical liquid from the grocery store. The paste coloring produces stronger colors and you don’t have to use as much of it. This is particularly important when making a cake like this one, where the batter is a light brown from the cocoa powder and resists the blue coloring. If you don’t use enough, you could end up with a slightly brownish blue color. Even mine was perilously close, although it was still blue enough for effect. A fail-safe solution is to omit the cocoa in the blue cake if you are concerned about nailing the final color.

I used the fluffy, marshmallow-like frosting from the Devil’s Food White Out CakeI made a few weeks ago, increasing it by half because I wanted to ensure that I had enough to frost a four layer cake generously. Its sweet, light consistency contrasts well with the moist cake. The cake is slightly more dense than the average red velvet cake might be, but with good reason: this consistency helps keep the layers easy to handle, so they slice and stack with little chance of crumbling while you work. The hint of cocoa is easily discernable and the overall effect is that of satisfying comfort food. With a colorful twist, of course.

If you want some more savory (grilling) ideas for the fourth, check out:

Otherwise, just go ahead with the cake recipe below, or any other red, white and blue dessert of your choice.

Happy Independence Day, everyone!

4th cake slice 

Red, White and Blue Velvet Cake
Red Cake
6 tbsp butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp red food coloring

Blue Cake
6 tbsp butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tbsp cocoa powder (optional)
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 tsp blue food coloring

Cake directions
Preheat oven to 350F and line two 9-inch round cake pans with circles of parchment paper. Lightly grease each one.
Work with the red cake in one large bowl and the blue in another, but make the cake batters at the same time.
In each of two large bowls, cream together butter and sugar. Beat in egg, followed by vanilla extract.
Sift flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt over the butter mixture. Pour in buttermilk, vinegar and food coloring and beat at a low speed until just combined. Rinse the beaters between bowls to avoid mixing colors, and add in additional food coloring if the color is not bright enough (a paste coloring will give you a strong color than the liquid).
Pour each batter into one of the prepared pans and bake for about 30 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center of each comes out clean.
Cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Frosting
6 large egg whites, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp cream of tartar
1/2 cup water
1 tbsp vanilla extract

Put the egg whites in to bowl of an electric mixer or a large bowl with a hand mixer nearby.
Combine sugar, cream of tartar and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and cool until syrup reaches 242F (use a candy thermometer).
As syrup nears correct temperature, begin to beat egg whites to soft peaks. Slowly stream in the hot sugar syrup and beat for about 5 minutes after everything has been incorporated, or until frosting reaches room temperature. Beat in vanilla until fully incorporated.

Assembly
Split each cake in half and place a red half on the bottom of a cake stand or serving platter. Top with an even layer of frosting, then add a blue cake layer. Don’t worry if some squishes out of the sides when you add the next layer, as you can use this frosting to help cover the sides when the cake is fully assembled. Frost the top of the blue layer and repeat with final red and blue layers. Frost top of cake and cover sides evenly with remaining frosting.
Finish cake with red, white and blue sprinkles, as desired,

Serves 10-12

4th cake


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