Now this isn't a virtuous cake from the point of view of fat or calories or anything but rather because it uses all natural ingredients to achieve the colour rather than red food colouring.
I wasn't really sure where to start with this recipe other than thinking that beetroot and raspberries both made very red smoothies/juices so probably had a reasonable chance of replacing the colouring. I looked at lots of recipes for red velvet cake, carrot cake and chocolate and beetroot cakes. I also looked at Harry Eastwood's book as she uses a lot of vegetables.
None of them had a recipe for red velvet, with no food colouring so I made one up. The mixture was slightly wet so next time I might use less liquid and it isn't quite the same flavour so I think I'd use maybe 1 tbsp more of cocoa but I have to say I'm pleased with the over all result. In particular that I managed to get a good depth of colour with all natural ingredients.
Makes a 9" square cake plus an extra cup cake
10oz self raising cake flour
10oz caster sugar
8oz margarine (I always use stork)
1/4 pint whole milk
1/4 pint natural yoghurt
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
3 tbsp cocoa powder
1tsp vanilla bean extract
4oz raw beetroot, grated
4oz frozen raspberries, defrosted, blender and sieved to remove all seeds.
Measure the yoghurt, milk into a jug. Add the beetroot and raspberry purée and blitz with a hand blender until very smooth.
Beat together the margarine and sugar. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing in between each.
Add the flour, cocoa, baking powder, cream of tartar and blend.
Add the yoghurt mixture and stir well until combined.
I took a large spoonful of the mixture out to make a single cupcake. I did this so I could check the colour and also so I had some 'spare' to crumble for the decoration on the top.
Pour the rest of the mixture into a lined and greased tin and bake in an over pre-heated to 180C for about 40-50 mins (the cup cake will need to come out after 15-20 mins).
Once cooked remove from the oven and cool.
I iced the cake with a standard buttercream with cream cheese mixed in and the topped with crumbs of red velvet cake from the cupcake I made.
Here is the finished result
And the cupcake so you can see the colour achieved
I am going to submit this as part of the Alpha Bakes challenge from The More than Occasional Baker and Caroline Makes. This months letter is V hence the Virtuous Red Velvet cake