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The origin of a red velvet cake is a mystery. There is some evidence that red velvet cake dates back to the 1920s, but a number of urban myths regarding its origins have materialized over the years. It is traditionally thought that red velvet cakes come from the South. Many of you may remember the red velvet groom's cake shaped like an armadillo from Shelby's wedding in Steel Magnolias. It is also rumored that the cake was created in Canada at the Eaton’s department store bakery. Perhaps the most interesting tale surrounding the origin of red velvet cake involves the famous Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City. So in reality, there is no way to answer the question of where did the red velvet cake come from.
- 16 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened (plus more for pans)
- 2 1⁄2 cups cake flour, sifted (plus more for pans)
- 2 tablespoons Dutch-processed cocoa powder, sifted
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 2 tablespoons red food coloring
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1⁄2 cups sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 1⁄2 cups sugar
- 1⁄3 cup flour
- 1 1⁄2 cups milk
- 1 1⁄2 cups unsalted butter, softened
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Heat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Butter and flour two 8″ cake pans, and set aside.
- Whisk together flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt in a bowl; set aside. Whisk together buttermilk, food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla in a bowl; set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, cream butter and sugar on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
- On low speed, alternately add dry ingredients in 3 batches and wet ingredients in 2 batches. Increase speed to high and beat until batter is smooth, about 5 seconds.
- Divide batter between prepared pans, and smooth top with a rubber spatula; drop pans lightly on a counter to expel any large air bubbles.
- Bake cakes until a toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Let cakes cool for 20 minutes in pans; invert onto wire racks, and let cool.
- When ready to frost the cake - Whisk together sugar and flour in a 4-qt. saucepan; add milk and whisk until smooth.
- Stirring often, bring to a boil over medium-high heat; cook, stirring constantly, until very thick, about 5 minutes.
- Remove pudding from heat; cool.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, beat butter and 1/4 of the pudding on medium-high speed until fluffy and smooth, about 1 minute.
- Add half the remaining pudding, beating until smooth, and then add remaining pudding and vanilla. Increase speed to high and beat frosting until white and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
- Place one cake on a cake stand, and spread with 1 1/2 cups frosting. Place second cake over frosting; cover top and sides with remaining frosting; chill to firm frosting. Serve at room temperature.