Posted on Friday, 13th May 2011 by Grace Massa Langlois
My sisters and I have been preparing for Natalie’s (my niece) bridal shower. The special day is fast approaching and we’ve been tossing around the idea of making the cake. My sister, Anna (Mother of the Bride), and I both decided to do a trial run on this Red Velvet Cake with Raspberry Filling and Cream Cheese Frosting. My first attempt didn’t go as planned. I had problems with the amount of filling I used and I couldn’t get the piping right. Saying I was frustrated would be a complete understatement.
At 11:30 last evening I decided to finally put the cake to bed (and myself). I thought it best to complete the decorating in the morning after a good night’s rest. I proceeded to carefully carry the cake to my downstairs’ kitchen (yes I have two kitchens, what good Italian doesn’t?) and place it in the extra fridge. What a mistake!
I was a mere 5 steps away from the refrigerator when I decided to switch the light on with my elbow. Bad idea! The cake stand tilted one way and almost instantaneously the cake layers slid right off one another and I was left with a great big mess. I’m sure you can imagine what words came flying out of my mouth – not one of my better moments.
Did I go to bed? No! I couldn’t let this cake get the better of me, especially since Anna’s cake came out perfect and her entire family was raving about the flavour combinations. What made the whole situation even more frustrating; I walked Anna through all the steps and provided her with the recipes. Her cake was a great success and mine was a complete failure.
The competitiveness in me got the better of me and I once again measured out all of my ingredients and I set out to make the cake again. I was given the perfect opportunity to correct my mistakes (trying to stay positive). I love butter! But substituting it for the canola oil wasn’t the best choice I’ve ever made. Butter didn’t produce that wonderful crumb that I am used to in a Red Velvet cake.
And I think substituting butter for the oil also caused the cakes to cave a little in the centre. Or it’s quite possible that my second and third mistakes could have contributed to the problem also. I only baked two cakes the first time instead of three and I also forgot to attach my Bake-Even Cake Strips (I love these! – The perfect tool for baking level cakes).
Second chances are a beautiful thing! Cakes came out beautifully leveled with the perfect moist crumb. Thankfully I initially made two batches of the Raspberry Filling. The filling came out perfect and the taste was amazing. It pairs beautifully with the Cream Cheese Frosting, the tartness balances out the sweetness. If I didn’t know any better and if I were doing a blind taste testing I would insist I was enjoying a spoonful of Raspberry Cheese Cake.
At three o’clock this morning I decided to finally close the kitchen down. I started fresh this morning. I made another batch of frosting and proceeded to decorate the cake. Decorating went much better the second time around. Although the Raspberry Filling is heavenly I decided a little restraint could go a long way. The frosting didn’t ooze out the sides this time; it stayed put only to be revealed when the first cut was made – a surprise, nestled between layers of moist red velvet cake and beneath fluffy cream frosting.
The moral of my story, stay focused, always remain cool and unruffled, and don’t try to do too many things at once (laundry, making a cheesecake, preparing 3 taco dips for your son’s prom night) – it can only lead to disaster.
Today is Red Velvet Cake, day 3. Anna and I will be attempting the cake on a larger scale – a half slab. I wonder what’s in store for us today? Third times a charm, right?
Red Velvet Cake with Raspberry Filling and Cream Cheese Frosting
Makes 1 20-cm (8-inch) 3 layer cake **Special Note – For best results, prepare Raspberry Filling the day before or at minimum, a few hours before assembling cake.
- Raspberry Filling
- Red Velvet Cake
- Cream Cheese Frosting
- 340 g (12 ounces) frozen unsweetened raspberries, thawed
- 113 g (½ cup) caster (super fine granules) sugar
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 23 g (2½ tablespoons) cornstarch, sifted
- 30 ml (1 ounce or 2 tablespoons) raspberry liqueur, Peach Schnapps, or Crème de Cassis
- Place frozen raspberries in a fine mesh sieve set over a small bowl, set-aside to thaw and once thawed, strain juice from berries. Pour raspberry juice into an 8-ounce liquid measuring cup. To the juice, add enough water to get ¾ cup of liquid, stir together, set-aside.
- Using the back of a spoon, press the raspberries (a small batch at-a-time) through the fine mesh sieve so that the seedless pulp falls into the bowl (making sure to scrape all the pulp from the bottom of the sieve), discard seeds, set-aside. Strain enough pulp to get between 1/3 and ½ cup pulp.
- Add the sifted cornstarch to the raspberry juice (juice/water mixture); stir with a fork until well combined and lump free. Pour juice-cornstarch mixture through fine mesh sieve (to catch any lumps) into a small saucepan.
- Add the sugar and lemon juice to the juice-cornstarch mixture. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly until thickened and mixture bubbles (making sure to cook out the cornstarch).
- Remove from heat, set-aside and allow to cool.
- Once cooled, add raspberry pulp and liqueur; stir to well combine. Refrigerate for a few hours, preferably overnight.
- Raspberry filling can be stored in an airtight container for up to one week.
Red Velvet Cake
- Unsalted butter, softened, for greasing
- 15 g (2 tablespoons) unsweetened cocoa, plus more for dusting
- 250 g (2½ cups) cake flour (not self-rising)
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 338 g (1½ cups) caster (superfine granules) sugar
- 355 ml (1½ cups) canola oil
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 30 ml (2 tablespoons or 1 ounce) red food colouring
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1½ teaspoons bicarbonate of (baking) soda
- 2 teaspoons distilled white vinegar
- Preheat oven to 180° C (350° F). Using a small pastry brush, butter 3 20-cm (8-inch) round cake tins; line bottoms with non-stick baking paper and then butter paper. Dust bottoms and sides of tins with cocoa (remove any excess), set-aside.
- Using a fine mesh sieve, sift flour, cocoa and salt into a medium bowl. Whisk together until well combined.
- In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the whip attachment, mix together the sugar and oil on medium speed until combined.
- Add the eggs one at-a-time, mixing well after each addition.
- Add the vanilla and food colouring, mix to combine.
- Add the flour in three additions, alternating with the buttermilk in two additions, mixing well after each addition; scrape sides and bottom of bowl as needed.
- In a small bowl, stir together the baking soda and vinegar. Add the baking soda mixture to the cake batter and mix on medium speed for 10 seconds.
- Pour batter (dividing batter evenly between tins) into prepared cake tins. Bake until a cake tester inserted in centre of cakes comes out clean, 25 to 35 minutes.
- Transfer tins to wire rack and let cool completely in tins before removing.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 340 g (12 ounces) cream cheese, softened
- 227 g (1 cup or 2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 500 g (4 cups or 1 pound) confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy.
- Add the butter; beat until smooth and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add the sifted confectioners’ sugar, ½ cup at-a-time, beating well after each addition, scraping sides and bottom of bowl as needed.
- Add the vanilla, mix to combine.
- If piping the frosting, refrigerate frosting for 15 to 20 minutes before assembling cakes (frosting will firm up, making it much easier to pipe).
- If not using immediately frosting can be refrigerated up to 3 days in an airtight container. Allow frosting to come to room temperature and beat on low speed in the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until smooth.
Assembling Red Velvet Cake with Raspberry Filling and Cream Cheese Frosting
- Remove cake from tins; remove non-stick baking paper.
- Place first cake round on cake plate or cake stand.
- Place a dollop of raspberry filling in the centre of the cake. Using an offset spatula spread filling over cake leaving a ¾-inch border.
- Transfer cream cheese frosting to a large decorator bag fitted with a Wilton 1M decorating tip or a large decorating tip of your choice. Pipe the frosting, squeezing the bag lightly while holding the decorating bag straight up, forming a spiralon, over top the raspberry cream, starting from the centre of the cake and working out toward the edges of the cake.
- Gently place the next cake round on top of the frosting (do not push cake layer down). Carefully repeat with a layer of raspberry filling and then another layer of frosting.
- Carefully place remaining cake layer on top of the piped frosting. Finish decorating the cake with a final layer of piped frosting.
- Slice and serve cake.
- Buon Appetito!
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Tags: after school treat, afternoon tea, cake, cakes, chocolate cake, cream cheese, dessert, desserts, food, food photography, food photos, frosting, fruit, gourmet cupcakes
Posted in Baking & Pastry, Baking Mise en Place, Fillings, Frostings & Dessert Sauces, Pastry Doughs & Batter, Recipes