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Red velvet: The cake of love

It’s luscious, light and the colour of love. Red velvet cake is the perfect dessert to serve this Valentine’s Day and these three twists on an unbeatable classic are sure to impress.

Valentine's Day cakespiration

If you’ve ever seen Steel Magnolias, you might remember the red velvet armadillo cake from the scene where Drum spits out his now-famous one-liner, “There’s nothing like a good piece of ass,” when he receives the tail end of the cake from sour-tempered Ouiser.

Just like a firm rump, there’s probably nothing better to be had on Valentine’s Day than a red velvet cake. But if you’re looking for something a bit more titillating than a traditional layer cake, try your hand at these three cheeky versions of the much-loved classic.

1

Red velvet cheesecake

Red velvet cheesecake

Serves 2

Adapted from Donna Hay

Ingredients:

  • 150 grams chocolate ripple biscuits
  • 50 grams butter
  • 50 grams milk chocolate
  • 150 grams cream cheese
  • 150 grams labne
  • 50 grams caster sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 50 grams dark chocolate, melted
  • 1 tablespoon red food colouring
  • 1 tablespoon cherry liqueur
  • 10-12 fresh cherries to serve
  • 100 millilitres whipped cream to serve

Directions:

  1. Crush the biscuits to a fine crumb in a food processor. Melt the butter with the chocolate and mix into the biscuit crumble until a pliable dough forms. Press the crumb mixture into two lightly-creased 10-centimetre Springform tart cases and push down with the back of the spoon until it is firmly packed onto the bottom and around the sides of the tin. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or until cold.
  2. Preheat your oven to 140 degrees C. In a medium-sized bowl, mix the cream cheese, labne and sugar until combined. Beat in the egg, melted chocolate, red food colouring and cherry liqueur until it is well combined. Pour into the tart cases and bake for 30 minutes or until set. Cool at room temperature for 30 minutes before placing in the refrigerator to set for a couple of hours.
  3. Serve topped with fresh cherries and whipped cream for a cheeky Valentine’s Day treat.

Looking for something sweet to start the day? Try these Valentine’s Day breakfast ideas >>

2

Red velvet beetroot brownies

Red velvet beetroot brownies

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 2 large beetroots, washed and peeled
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup self-raising flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C. Chop the beetroot into small cubes and steam until tender, then blend in a food processor until smooth. You should have approximately 1 cup of puree.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar until it has doubled in volume and is pale and creamy. Add the ground ginger and eggs, one at a time, beating until just combined. Stir in the beetroot puree and mix until the colour is consistent.
  3. Sift the flour and the cocoa powder together until well combined, then gently fold into the brownie mixture with the chocolate chips until just combined. Pour into a greased, 20-centimetre square baking tray and bake until a skewer comes out clean — approximately 30 minutes. Let the brownie cool slightly before cutting into squares and serve warm with cream or ice cream.
3

Red velvet crinkle cookies

Red velvet crinkle cookies

Makes 12 (approximately)

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon red food colouring
  • Seeds from one vanilla pod
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1 cup icing sugar

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until pale and creamy. Add in the egg and beat until combined.
  2. Mix the buttermilk and red food colouring in a cup until evenly coloured then pour into the butter mixture with the vanilla. Beat again until well mixed.
  3. Sift the dry ingredients together then fold into the butter mixture until just combined. When everything is mixed together, stir in the teaspoon of white vinegar and allow the batter to rest for about an hour.
  4. Once the biscuits have rested, preheat your oven to 180 degrees C and lightly grease and line a baking tray. Scoop out the batter and drop it into a flat bowl of powdered sugar to coat. Repeat until all the mixture has been used.
  5. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the cookies have risen and are firm to touch — be careful not to overcook them and do not leave them to brown. When done, remove and cool on a wire rack before serving with a ruby red raspberry milkshake.

More Valentine’s Day ideas

The great Valentine’s Day debate
Nurture yourself this Valentine’s Day
Valentine’s Day cards for kids

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