I love the deep red color of this southern cake. Originally thought, the vinegar and buttermilk mixed with the cocoa when baked turned the cake red. But if that were true than any and all chocolate cakes that included buttermilk or something else acidic would turn the cake red, and it doesn't. Nowadays, it's made with red food coloring- lots and lots of red food coloring! You might want to wear an apron and rubber gloves :-)
- 1 1/2 c. sugar
- 1 c. shortening
- 2 large eggs
- 1-1 oz. bottle red food coloring
- 3 tbsp. cocoa
- 2 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
- 1 1/4 c. buttermilk
- 1 tbsp. vinegar
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. baking soda
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 3- 8 inch pans or line 18 muffin tins with paper liners. Set aside.
To make the cake, in a bowl cream the sugar and shortening. Add the eggs one at a time. In a separate bowl make a paste with the food coloring and cocoa. Add the paste to the shortening mixture. In another bowl combine the flour and salt, and add to the mixture. In a cup mix the buttermilk, vinegar and soda, and add to the mixture. Pour the mixture into prepared pans.
Bake for 25-30 minutes in the cake pans and 15-20 for the cupcakes, or until done. Let the cake cool in the pans completely before removing.
When cool, frost with cream cheese frosting (recipe below).
NOTE: I made this cake in one large bowl. I creamed the butter and sugar, then added the eggs, then alternately added the dry ingredients with the wet. I then added the food coloring at the very end.
The original recipe called for 4 ounces of red food coloring. I only used one 1 oz. bottle and it was plenty red. If you want to add more, go right ahead. This would also be fun to try out other colors, like blue, green, or even purple.
This recipe makes one 3-layer cake or 18 cupcakes.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
- 4 tbsp. butter, softened
- 3 c. powdered sugar, sifted
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/2 c. chopped nuts (optional)
In a medium bowl, cream the cheese, butter and vanilla til smooth with a hand mixer. Slowly mix in sifted powdered sugar til light and fluffy. Frost cake and top with nuts. Eat right away or refrigerate any leftovers.
Happy Birthday my Love!
Samuel Andrew - August 15, 2006