rena asked in Food & DrinkCooking & Recipes · 7 months ago

I just attempted a Red Velvet cake...is there any reason why it didn't turn out red?

I just did a first attempt at a red velvet cake, and it was delicious and incredibly moist(I added coffee to the mix), however, when I put my red food colouring in, it really didn't change the colour...it was a very liquid based food colouring. It turned out to be a very delicious chocolate cake instead of a very delicious red velvet cake.

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  • 7 months ago
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    "When making red velvet cake, it's really important to use the right red food colouring: either Sugarflair Red Extra paste or Dr Oetker Natural Red. Don't get the standard red colouring, as the cake will turn brown when you bake it."

    • rena7 months agoReport

      Ah...that explains it! Thanks.

  • 7 months ago

    Even if you had followed a reputable and tested recipe to the exact ingredient, baking is exact science, and there are so many factors why a recipe fails you but not someone else.

    ok number one you people who google recipes need to stop blindly believing every 1st hit is a real deal. People make up recipes and post them all the time. If you are going to try a food item for first time, spend a few hours/days researching and finding the real deal. And make sure you have all the right ingredients.and then make the real deal recipe as is successfully before you start tweaking and subbing ingredients. Otherwise you will be frustrated needlessly. As was said, red velvet is not a chocolate cake. there is cocoa in it but again, because of science, your results will vary. If you used dutch cocoa then your colour will not be as vivid- this is chemistry- acid interaction. Reduced amount of vinegar will help also.

    there is no coffee in red velvet cake- so like I said go ahead and tweak whatever recipes you are making but only after you understand the chemistry. Coffee isnt just an added flavour. It has a chemical makeup that interacts with other ingredients, not just as simple a thing as adding a liquid and not adjusting other liquid or dry ingredients. Acidity, alkalinity, all that stuff is actually a thing.

    Tweaking a cake is not like making a cheese omelet and adding some mushrooms.

    Ok and as I Said before even if you follow an authentic recipe to theT, you will probably achieve dif results anyway. Why? because David or Jane Doe developed and tested X recipe in a humid tropical sea level zone like coastal Texas in a brand new Acme brand new induction oven, and you (for example) are attempting the exact same recipe in Flagstaff Arizona at 7000 feet above sea level in a dry climate and in a 25 year old gas oven. You see where I'm going? All ovens are not created equal. but that is the easiest tweak. Pick up an oven thermometer and calibrate your oven- if a cookie recipe says 350F and you set your oven to 350 it can be off by one or two degrees or even more drastic 25 or 50 sometimes. So you have to adjust all your recipes accordingly.

    Secondly, it sounds preposterous to the novice or non baker but level of humidity in the air as well as elevation will alter baking chemistry. So this is where you play around and tweak accordingly. Higher humidity in your air=lower amount of liquid in your recipe or increase dry. Higher elevation =longer baking time due to lower air pressure/decreasing leavening agents/decreasing liquid or increasing flour etc as liquids evaporate faster.

    There are ample sources online that you should bookmark if you're going to do more baking and want tested and legit info on baking chemistry. Just do a search for high altitude baking. If you live high up that is lol. Easy enough to find out elevation and climate zone you live in.

  • 7 months ago

    your coffee also changed the chemical make up of the cake. Coffee is dark and I bet over powered the red color.

    OR the recipe isn't a good one.

    Not all recipes are good.

    edit: Heart O' Gold brought up a great point. A basic red velvet cake is NOT a chocolate cake with red food coloring. It has very little actual cocoa in it. too much cocoa can also overpower the red food coloring.

  • 7 months ago

    Did you follow a recipe? I am not sure red velvet cake is actually chocolate, or at least not VERY chocolate.

    Adding the coffee is what screwed it up. Baking is a chemical reaction between the flour, fat, moisture and leavening and recipes or mixes are very very finely balanced. Changing the recipe in any way will change your results.

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