Kids had few days off school as part of their winter break and instead of taking them to a ski vacation we flew to sunny Dubai and stayed at one of our favorite resort Atlantis the Palm, where kids had an amazing time on the beach with mommy (myself hihihi) and friends. We’re lucky to have so many friends living in Dubai, which always makes of our vacation an unforgettable one.
Back to my kitchen and to my baking passion, an old recipe of a red velvet cake shouted at me across the room to urgently make it; I was so powerless over its lusciousness and didn’t hesitate for a second.
I usually prefer dry cakes without any frosting on, but this combination of red velvet cake and vanilla cream cheese frosting is gorgeous and I’m sure once you try it you will stay hooked.
I had fun writing words with my children to top each slice of the cake, we wrote much more than we needed as some of them got broken while peeling them off the paper, but no one minded eating an extra piece of chocolate, they clearly have a sweet tooth like mommy.
Red Velvet Cake
- ½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 ½ cups sugar
- 2 eggs, at room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3 tbsp red food coloring
- 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 cup milk, at room temperature
- 1 tsp white vinegar
- 1 tsp baking soda
For the cream cheese frosting
- 450g / 16 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
- 3 tbsp butter, at room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2½ cups icing sugar, sifted
- Pinch of salt
- 100g dark chocolate to make the toppers (optional)
Preheat the oven to 185°C. Grease and flour two 9-inch round cake pan.
In a large bowl, using a hand mixer or a stand mixer, beat butter and sugar. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Beat in vanilla.
Mix together cocoa powder and food coloring to form a paste and add it to the egg mixture.
Sift together flour, salt and baking powder. Add the flour mixture, gradually to the egg mixture, alternating with the milk, beat until well incorporated, making sure to scrape down the bottom of the bowl with a spatula.
Mix baking soda and vinegar together and add.
Divide batter into prepared pans. Bake 30-40 minutes, until cake springs back when gently pressed with finger.
Cool the cakes in their pans on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove the cakes from the pan, and allow to cool completely before frosting.
To make the frosting: Whisk together cream cheese and butter until smooth.
Add, sugar, vanilla and salt and beat on medium-high speed until well combined.
To assemble, place one of the cakes top side-down on a cake stand or plate. Spread the cream cheese over the top. Top it with the second cake and now spread the remaining cream cheese to cover the cakes from all sides, and decorate if desired.
To make the toppers: Melt chocolate over a bain-marie and fill it in a squeeze bottle or a piping bag. Write words (like love, kisses, hugs, xoxo, valentine) on a wax paper and wait few minutes to cool. Once the chocolate is hard, peel it off the paper and insert it gently in the cream.