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Monday, 10 March 2008

This delicious cake is a Southern specialty and has been in my family for many generations. In the early days, red velvet cake was the signature dessert in upscale restaurants and hotels. But today this rich and sweet dessert topped with cream cheese frosting is enjoyed at many celebrations. This moist cake is a good choice to serve for special occasions, and is perfectly suited for your Easter feast.

A few years ago, my sister Debra and I were celebrating her wedding anniversary and my birthday. I doubled the recipe for this cake and baked it in a half-sheet cake pan. Our guests just love it. It was a nice change from the traditional decorated birthday cake. Try it for your next celebration. You’re be glad you did!

2 1/2 cups self-rising flour
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
2 ounces red food coloring

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour three (8 inch) round pans. In a large bowl, mix together sugar, oil, and eggs. Add food coloring and vinegar to buttermilk. Add baking soda to flour.

Add flour mixture and buttermilk mixtures alternately to the sugar mixture. Mix well. Stir 1 teaspoon vanilla into batter. Pour batter into prepared pans. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until tester comes out clean. Remove from oven, and cool on wire racks.

Cream Cheese Frosting

1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
4 cups confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Mix together cream cheese, butter or margarine, confectioners' sugar, and vanilla. Stir in nuts. Spread over cooled cake.

Cassandra Harrell is an avid soul food lover. She recently owned a soul food restaurant and catering service and is editor of Soul Food Lover’s Newsletter. Her website http://www.soul-food-advisor.com is the place to find delicious soul food recipes and homemade desserts.

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