Thursday, February 14, 2013

Red Wine Velvet Cake

What is left of the Red Wine Velvet cake...before the family gets to it!
I have been invited to join this interesting group of ladies who call themselves "The Hens".  Basically its a group of women who love to cook and all have diverse interests (although we have many different types of artists). For the first time in many years I am the youngest member (when the heck do you stop being the youngest and become the oldest anyway?).  This is the second get together I have been to, the first being last month when I made the Thyme and Parmesan Crackers and some Olive Oil Crackers. 

Today being Valentines Day we all needed to bring a red food...sounds easy but I didn't want to bring anymore tomatoes or beets (since I figured that would be the base of most of the foods we would be having) to the Internet I went!  First I typed in Red food recipes and that got me pretty close to no where until I found this recipe on Oprah's web site!

I was pretty comfortable making the cakes as the directions were straight forward.  My worries were icing the cake and getting it all the way down town without messing up the icing.  To the rescue came the eldest daughter who has way more patience than I do!  She put a crumb coat on the cake and than carefully iced the rest of it and did a pretty dern good job too!  I only know about a crumb layer of cake from watching PBS this morning where Julia Child's had Martha Stewart on making a wedding cake.  Now after I watch something like that I always feel like such an amateur (which I am).  They were making fruit out of such fanciness for us!  All we wanted was a kind of smooth looking icing and a cake that did not slide over as I made a turn (thanks to "The Chew" yesterday for letting me know that I am not the only person that ever happens to).  The daughter figured out that if we put bamboo skewers through top of the cake the layers wouldn't shift all over the place and than some careful skewers through the sides would stop the foil from mushing up the icing!  Well  done Jen!!

So for your reading and hopefully cake making enjoyment is....

Red-Wine Velvet Cake Recipe

Recipe created by Deb Perelman | From the October 2012 issue of
O, The Oprah Magazine
Rather than let an open bottle of red wine languish on the refrigerator shelf, blogger Deb Perelman, author of The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook, uses it in place of the usual food coloring in a red velvet cake. The result—a rich, fudgy marriage of chocolate and wine—will leave you hopeful for more leftover Pinot Noir in the near future.

Makes 1 cake, to serve 16 to 20.



·    18 Tbsp. unsalted butter at room temperature, plus more for greasing
·    2 1/4 cups packed dark brown sugar
·    3/4 cup granulated sugar
·    4 large eggs, at room temperature
·    1 large egg yolk
·    2 1/4 cups red wine
·    1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
·    3 cups plus 2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
·    1 1/2 cups Dutch-process cocoa powder                   
·    3/8 tsp. baking soda
·    1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
·    3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
·    3/4 tsp. salt

·    24 ounces cream cheese (three 8-ounce boxes), at room temperature
·    3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
·    2 tsp. vanilla extract
·    3 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar

Active time: 30 minutes
Total time: 1 hour

To make cake: Preheat oven to 325°. Line the bottom of three 9 round cake pans with parchment paper. Grease parchment and sides of pan. Place butter in a large bowl. Using an electric mixer, cream butter on medium speed until smooth. Add brown and granulated sugars and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add eggs and yolk and beat until incorporated, then add red wine and vanilla. (Don't worry if the batter looks a little uneven and grainy.)

In a medium bowl, mix flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Sift dry mixture over wet ingredients. Mix until 3/4 combined, then fold in remaining dry mixture with a rubber spatula.

Divide batter among prepared pans. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center of each layer comes out clean. The top of each cake should be shiny and smooth. Cool in the pan 10 minutes, then remove cakes from pans and let cool completely on a rack. (If cakes have domed a bit and you want even layers, trim tops using a long serrated knife held horizontally.)

To make frosting: In a medium bowl, use an electric mixer to beat cream cheese and butter until smooth. Mix in vanilla, then gradually stir in confectioners' sugar.

To frost cake, place one layer on a cake stand or plate and spread with 1 cup frosting. Repeat with next 2 layers and spread top and sides with remaining frosting.

Printed from on Tuesday, January 29, 2013

© 2012 Harpo Productions, Inc. All Rights Reserved.


  1. What a perfect Valentine recipe, not only timely but beautiful and tasty looking too. I'm hopeless when it comes to spreading icing, but have discovered an easy trick similar to yours, I just ask Linda. Happy Valentines, Colleen.

    1. Stephen, I think the idea of having someone else ice the cake it awesome!!!

  2. This sounds amazing! I love to bake and what a beautiful looking cake. It has a lot wine in the recipe... sounds interesting too. Thanks for sharing this I am definitely adding this to my do list list.

    Have a great weekend Colleen

    1. I have not been much of a scratch baker so this was a big one for me! I thought there was a lot of red wine in the recipe too but you do not really taste it just a hint. I didn't have any round cake pans so I used an 8x8 square glass pan. The cooking time for me was much longer also....

  3. this looks REALLY good..when the kids are out and I have my life back....
    I'm going to EAT WINE CAKE!!!

    1. Enjoy it! Even better have a glass of wine with your wine cake!!

  4. Oooh, there is not too much better than homemade Red Velvet Cake (though no one makes it properly in SoCal--no cocoa!Wha??? They seem to think it's all about red food coloring.)--but adding red wine = genius! Well done!

    1. I never thought of Red Velvet cake being a regional kind of thing but...your right! Having lived in the Northeast, Southwest and the Bay area and having never eatten it before (but seeing it very occasionally in the other parts of the country) I was hesitant to try it. I have to admit that I am not crazy for it but add wine and viola!!