This is another one of those things I never tried before becoming vegan but always wanted to. Red Velvet Cake always looks so visually stunning and as I'm a huge fan of cream cheese frosting, figured I would like this. The cake is subtly flavoured with chocolate and traditionally the cake would turn a browny red from a chemical reaction of the cocoa powder and acidic vinegar, but these days red food colouring is often added for extra oomph.
Well, it turned out very well, I based mine on Joy of Baking's as I loved the look of the quadruple layers and the addition of the coconut. I was able to find natural flaked coconut at my local farm shop which is perfect in this, desiccated would be ok but I would recommend unsweetened as the cake is sweet enough. Also if you can find shredded coconut that would be good too.
Red Velvet Cake: (makes two 8" layers)
250g plain flour
1/2 tsp salt
15g cocoa powder
113g vegan margarine
300g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla
240ml vanilla or plain soy yogurt (natural unsweetened)
4 tsp vegetarian red food colouring
1 tsp white vinegar
1 tsp baking soda
1 Tbsp cornstarch
1 Tbsp potato starch
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp xanthan gum
scant 1/2 cup water
2 tsp vegetable oil
Grease and line two 8" cake pans with baking paper and set aside. Preheat the oven to 180C. First make your 'eggs' - mix the dry ingredients together then add the oil and water whisking until a bit frothy - set aside. In a bowl mix together the flour, cocoa powder and salt - set aside. With an electric mixer or with a whisk beat the margarine until soft then add the sugar and beat until light and fluffy - about 2 minutes. Add half the egg replacer, mix well, then add the other half and the vanilla, mix well.
In a measuring cup whisk the soy yogurt with the red food colouring. With the mixer on slow speed, or by hand, alternately add the flour mixture and soy yogurt mixture to the margarine/sugar mix in three additions, starting and ending with the flour. In a small cup combine the vinegar and baking soda, allow it to fizz then quickly whisk into the batter.
Working quickly divide the batter evenly between the two pans and spread evenly. Bake in preheated oven for 25 - 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool the cakes for 10 minutes in their pans on a wire rack then turn over and let cool completely.
Cream 'cheese' frosting:
110g tofutti cream cheese
110g vegan margarine
650g icing sugar
2 tsp vanilla
In a mixer or by hand mix the cream cheese and margarine until well combined. Slowly start adding the icing sugar a little at a time beating well after each addition. Whisk in the vanilla. Add more icing sugar if needed till of a spreading consistency. If you add too much add some dairy free milk to thin.
To assemble the cake, carefully slice the two cakes in half - use a serrated knife and slowly go around the cake then slice the middle. Place one half on a serving plate and spread some of the frosting. Repeat until you place the nicest looking cake quarter on top. Spread the top and sides with the frosting then cover all over with the coconut (if using). We got 12 good size slices out of this, it's very rich though so - it's up to you! :)
Sources: Joy of Baking
Frosting based on 'Vegan Cupcakes take over the World'.