This cake is adapted from one attributed to B. Smith, a fashion model who parlayed her career into that of a restaurateur. In my teens, I had the pleasure of meeting her one day when my aunt and I stopped by her new restaurant. I wish I could say she handed me this recipe that day, but nope — I only met her briefly, and she was very sweet. I found this on Epicurious years later and it’s one of my favorite versions of red velvet cake. I’ve modified it a bit over the years and played with the ingredients, but I always come back to this one which is close to the original. The trick is to sift your cake flour before measuring OR weigh it out. If you use too much flour, the cake will be dry.
B. Smith’s Red Velvet Cake
- 2 1/4 cups sifted cake flour sifted, then measured 225 grams weigh or White Lily
- 2 tablespoons natural unsweetened cocoa powder don’t use Dutch or dark
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup buttermilk at room temperature
- 2 generous tablespoons red food coloring 1 oz bottle
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 stick 4 oz unsalted butter, cool room temperature
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar
- 2 8- ounce packages cream cheese room temperature
- 1/2 cup 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray two 9-inch round pans with flour added cooking spray or rub with shortening and dust with flour.
- Sift together cake flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt; set aside.
- Mix buttermilk, food coloring, vanilla and vinegar in small bowl or large glass measure; set aside.
- Beat sugar and butter in large bowl, using an electric mixer, until light and creamy. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating until well blended after each addition. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture and stir until blended. Stir in half of the buttermilk, then another third of the flour mixture. Stir in remaining buttermilk and finally, remaining flour mixture. Stir vigorously until lumps are gone or beat on low speed of mixer.
- Divide batter between pans and bake cakes on center rack for 25-28 minutes or until a wooden skewer inserted in center comes out clean.
- Cool in pans on racks 10 minutes. Turn cakes out onto racks; cool completely.
- Beat cream cheese and butter in large bowl until smooth. Beat in vanilla. Add powdered sugar and beat until smooth.