For someone that doesn’t like Halloween, I certainly take advantage of what comes with the season. I taunt diabetes by devouring any stray peanut butter cup that might be lying around. I watch scary movies seconds before bed and then proceed to dream that Michael Meyers is after me, or worse yet I dream that I am Michael Meyers and they won’t serve me at Starbucks.
This past weekend I put myself through two screenings of The Shining; one screening of Hocus Pocus; one third of Silence of the Lambs; Harry Potter 7; Halloween 1 through 3; Child’s Play; and the worst mistake of all, Paranormal Activity 2. If nothing will make you wet your pants with fear, that movie will. I was straight up frightened to death. Had it not been for that bag of Cape Cod chips and Helluva Good french onion dip in the kitchen, I wouldn’t have left the couch.
I need something to take my mind off of everything that I put in my head recently, so I return to you my dear blog-friends to share with you a recent recipe that Mark whipped up for his mother’s birthday.
Yes! This will get my mind off of the fright fest that I have created for myself! This is what I need to forget all the blood and gore that I have seen recently! This is a red velvet cake, which in its early stages can resemble a scene out of ‘Dexter.’
Ok, so maybe it won’t get my mind off of things. Oh well. Happy Halloween.
2 1/2 cups sifted cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons cocoa powder (unsweetened)
2 oz. red food coloring
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon baking soda
For the cream cheese frosting you’ll need:
16 oz. cream cheese (2 packages), softened
1/2 cup unsalted butter (one stick), softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
pinch of salt
Preheat your oven to 350. Meanwhile, sift together your flour, baking powder and salt into a cute little bowl.
Then take another bowl, the food coloring and the cocoa powder over to your neighbor’s house and ask them to use their kitchen. This next step is sure to temporarily stain your counters, your hand and your clothes so it is better to do it their kitchen. Unless you like your neighbors, then that would be mean.
The job here is the blend the powder and coloring until it looks like this. Then you can say goodbye to your neighbor and return to your clean kitchen.
In your Kitchenaid mixer cream together the butter and sugar and then toss in the eggs, vanilla and bloody paste. Add a little of your flour mixture and 1/2 of the buttermilk. Add some more flour mixture and the rest of the buttermilk. Let it combine, scrape down the sides if necessary, and add the remaining flour mixture.
In a small cup, add your baking soda and vinegar. It will react. This is okay. It’s science.
You just made science in your kitchen! You are so cool, you science geek, you!
Add your science to the batter, stir and divide your batter into two greased cake pans. Toss them in the oven until baked nicely (use the old toothpick-in-the-middle trick). For us it took about 30-35 minutes.
While the cakes bake, start making the frosting by creaming together the butter and cream cheese in the mixer. Once combined, add the powdered sugar, salt and vanilla extract. Crank the mixer to high until it is whipped to perfection.
Once the cakes dry, make sure they cool before you frost it. Otherwise it will melt and slip off onto the cake platter leaving you with the ugliest and saddest little cake around. Frost the top of the bottom layer first, add the top layer and then frost the entire outside.
It was creamy, rich, sweet and absolutely divine. It was something you could eat with a fork while standing up in your kitchen. It was something you could bring to your neighbor whose kitchen you stained.
It’s something you could bring to me while I huddle under the covers tonight after watching the ‘Saw’ marathon on Showtime.
I’ll never learn.