Recipe by Julesong
Here is the Red Velvet Cake recipe, given to me by Urban Legend Master Jan Harold Brunvand (yep, the guy who wrote the books; a friend of mine). It's also known as the "$500 cake" or "Waldorf-Astoria Cake" - recipe distributed since the 1950s (at least) by the Adams Extract company of Austin, TX. It's just one version of this folkloric dessert, and a good one.
- 1⁄2 cup shortening
- 1 1⁄2 cups sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon adams best vanilla
- 1 teaspoon adams butter flavor extract
- 1 (1 1/2 ounce) bottleadams red food coloring
- 3 tablespoons cocoa
- 2 1⁄2 cups sifted cake flour
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon vinegar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup shortening
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons adams best vanilla
- 1⁄4 teaspoon adams butter flavor extract
Directions See How It's Made
- Begin making the cake: cream shortening, sugar, eggs, flavors.
- Make a paste of cocoa and food coloring, add to first mixture.
- Alternately add flour and buttermilk.
- Mix soda and vinegar in small bowl; add to batter; blend.
- Bake in 3-9" or 10" pans for 20-25 minutes at 350 degrees; let cool completely
- Make frosting: cook milk, flour, salt, until thick; stirring constantly; let cool.
- Cream shortening and sugar very well; add flavors - combine with the first mixture; beat well.
- Cover cake with frosting.
- Tell legend while serving.
- Reference: Brunvand, "The Vanishing Hitchhiker," NY: WW Norton, 1981, 154-160; more information coming in Brunvand,"The Brain Drain and other Timely Tales" Urbana: Univ of Ill Press, 1999.
- The Adams products, of course, may be substituted if you do not live in Texas or nearby where they are sold.
- Note from Julie: for St. Patrick's Day, substitute *green* food coloring and make Green Velvet Cake! Or during Halloween, mix red and yellow to make orange.