Sunday, November 21, 2010

Rivarly Week Recipe #2—True Blue Velvet Cake

Even though I hate the expression, I needed to kill two birds with one stone. (If anyone knows a less violent phrase, do share.) First of all, we had a 1/2 birthday to celebrate at the office, and I wanted to make something to post on the blog in connection with the BYU vs. University of Utah Food Drive. The student alumni association from each school tries to collect the most food and money the two weeks leading up to the big rivalry football game.

I'm the advisor for the BYU Student Alumni, and these students have been doing an amazing job raising funds and collecting food for a wonderful cause. Everything collected by BYU goes to Community Action Services and Food Bank of Utah County. Here's an interesting fact. Did you know Community Action Services can leverage every dollar donated to equal about 15 to 20 lbs. of food? That's amazing! And, even in Utah there is a great need. Please take a moment to donate by clicking here.

Before I get to the recipe, here is a video the students made to promote the food drive. Enjoy!

If you haven't seen the commercial this parodies, click here.

Now, the recipe...

I decided to make a red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting but with a twist. Instead of using the color of the opposition, I substituted blue food coloring. I didn't have enough food coloring on hand to make it real BYU blue, but it turned out pretty well. And, it was a lot of fun.

I just hope it brings good luck to the Cougars as they face the Utes, and inspires everyone to give this holiday season.
Happy 1/2 Birthday, Lisa, and GO Cougars!
True Blue Velvet Cake
  • 2¼ cups cake flour
  • 2 Tbsps. unsweetened cocoa
  • 2 tsps. ground cinnamon
  • 1¼ tsps. baking powder 
  • ¼ tsp. baking soda 
  • ¾ tsp. salt 
  • ¾ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten
  • 2 tsps. vanilla extract
  • 2 bottles (1 ounce each) liquid food coloring
  • 1 cup buttermilk or sour cream (not fat free), at room temperature

Preheat oven to 350°. Grease and line two 9-in. round cake pans. Set aside.

Place the flour, cocoa, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a strainer and sift together.

In a mixing bowl, beat butter until soft and creamy, about 45 seconds. While mixing, slowly add the sugar. Continue beating at medium speed until the mixture is very light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Slowly drizzle in the eggs and beat well. Add vanilla and liquid food coloring and blend well.

Using the mixer on low speed, fold in about one-third of the flour mixture, then half of the buttermilk or sour cream. In the same manner, fold in half of the remaining flour mixture followed by the remaining buttermilk or sour cream. Finally, add the remaining flour mixture.

Divide the batter between the prepared pans. Bake on the center rack for about 25 minutes. Each cake layer should spring back when lightly touched in the center and a toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean.

Place pans on a wire rack to cool for 5 to 10 minutes, then turn the cake layers out onto the rack to cool completely.

Frost with Cream Cheese Frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting
  • ¾ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 lb. cream cheese (not fat free) chilled
  • 2 tsps. vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • Milk (not fat free), if needed
In a bowl, beat the butter with an electric mixer at medium speed until soft and fluffy. Add the cream cheese, vanilla, salt and beat at low speed just until the mixture is smooth and creamy, but do not overbeat. Add 1 cup of powdered sugar and beat at low speed just until incorporated. Add the remaining 2 cups powdered sugar and beat just until smooth. Add a little milk if the mixture is too thick.


  1. 1) It's my half birthday too, where's my cake? (burnt orange, please)

    2) Why are you a fat free hater? Does it really mess up the recipe?

    3) I want to know who has won the food drive over the last 18 it!

  2. I'm sorry, but all blue foods look like they should be served in a "Star Trek" episode.

  3. Want!

    I need to stop eating so much cake. But how mesmerising is blue sponge?

  4. Lori--I don't know if we've really kept records of who has won each year. It seems to go back and forth. In the end, it's the community that wins.

    Lois--Blue food is not really a favorite of mine either. I remember seeing that blue drink Luke Skywalker had near the beginning of Star Wars and was kind of grossed out. However, for the food drive rivalry, this was fun. It also tasted great, so you didn't notice the color.

    Mr. P--I love how the British call cake sponge. I'm thinking of trying other colors. Green for St. Patrick's, maybe?


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