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Feb 4, 2009 08:59 AM

best red velvet cake recipe?

For a possible dessert at a Valentine's Day/birthday dinner party. One sees them talked up, but I've not made it myself. Anyone have a recipe for this that they like?

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  1. I *think* this is the recipe my husband has made with success a couple of times: I am a big fan of red velvet cake-- the light chocolate taste, the kitsch. One pet peeve I have is that it isn't supposed to have cream cheese frosting, which is what most people use. It's supposed to have a boiled icing (at least according to my very southern grandma). Here's her recipe:
    (Prep 1st and let cool in fridge.)
    Cook until thick:
    1 c. milk
    5 T. flour

    1 c. butter
    1 c. 10x sugar
    1 t. vanilla

    Beat with mixer until creamy. Add cooled milk mixture slowly.

    It's pretty basic and I've actually never made it myself, but it's legit. I won't judge, though, if you go with cream cheese ;)

    5 Replies
    1. re: Procrastibaker

      Yes, that's a pet peeve of mine, too.

      My aunt from North Carolina made the first red velvet cake I ever ate. The icing is important to me. Comes from a tradition of making do when cream wasn't readily available.

      1. re: Seeker19104

        Good to know the reason for the icing, Seeker. Thanks! And I'm glad to have some back-up on this-- few people know about it.

        1. re: Procrastibaker

          Pro, the red velvet cake featured on the link below, from another RV cake discussion, also included a frosting like yours.

          1. re: HillJ

            Thanks, Hill J! I'll check it out....

      2. re: Procrastibaker

        I love boiled icing (grandmother and mother's generation made it) much more than cream cheese - needs refrigeration, though. also good on banana cake.


        This CH post is all you need for a killer RV cake and plenty of tips!

        1 Reply
        1. re: HillJ

          Thank you! I'd searched the site, but not hard enough apparently. This is just what I was looking for.

        2. McCormick spices has a great, simple red velvet cake recipe on its site (sorry don't know how to embed links). As well I made the red velvet cake from the epicurious site "Red Velvet Cake with Blueberries and Raspberries", Bon Appetit 2003, omitting berries during the holidays and it was a great hit. The typical complaint about this cake is that it can be dry, I brushed the layers with a simple sugar syrup before frosting.

          2 Replies
          1. re: foufou

            Buttermilk keeps the RV cake moist. I don't think I've ever had a dry RV cake, it's usually too moist. Often too sweet for my taste and I adjust the sugar both in the cake and in the frosting. I recently made a RV cheesecake. Super moist, almost wet and on the sweeter side..recipe still needs work. RV in cupcake form is my preference because I can splurge without the commitment to a big slice or whole cake. But, for presentation and WOW factor, especially for newcomers, RV is in the top 5.

            1. re: HillJ

              My friend Christopher dye s the cake with mashed strawberry syrup. Very tasty and less artificial. Sometimes he puts crushed pecans on the outside. But he's from Montreal, not that Southern.


            Splendid, in case you check back on this thread, this food blogger did a recipe comparison of the Red Velvet Cake from popular food bloggers. The results are very interesting and I thought you might enjoy it.

            1 Reply
            1. re: HillJ

              Why thank you. I ended up making the cake from the thread referenced earlier, Mom Mom's. I used fancy butter instead of crisco and a mix of liquid and gel red dye (I miscalculated when buying the former, didn't have enough!) In any case, it was terrific. Quite an arresting color, and the frosting was dynamite. Just a terrific cake overall.