Forget Red Roses, Go Red Velvet

Forget Red Roses, Go Red Velvet

Television and newspaper inserts are saturated with ads for expensive jewelry and romantic getaways. Stores are stocked with saccharine greeting cards, red roses, and the obligatory heart-shaped chocolates. Yep, Valentine's Day is right around the corner.

Over the 19 Valentine's Days we've spent together, my husband and I have given and received cards and flowers, gone on a vacation or two, and definitely eaten a ton of chocolates. The Valentine's Days that seem to stand out the most though were those that were simple yet special.

My plan for this year? Simple yet special. A quiet dinner of Butternut Squash Risotto with Sage Butter by candlelight, time spent looking through the collection of heartfelt messages we've sent to one another over the years, and this amazing Red Velvet cake for dessert. The moist red cake complemented by the sweet, cream cheese frosting is just the right indulgence for this holiday. To me, nothing says "I love you more" than time spent in the kitchen creating a deliciously decadent cake made from scratch.

Gluten Free and Dairy Free Red Velvet Cake

2 cups gluten free flour (1 cup white rice, 1/4 cup coconut flour, 3/4 cup sorghum)
1/2 cup tapioca starch
1 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa (Hershey's brand is gluten free)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups canola oil
1 cup dairy free buttermilk (Silk Vanilla Almond Milk + 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar)
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp vanilla extract (McCormick's brand is gluten free)
2 tbsp + 2 tsp red food coloring (McCormick's brand is gluten free)

Cream Cheese Frosting

1 8 oz. tub of soy cream cheese (Tofutti, Galaxy Foods)
2 sticks (1 cup) Earth Balance shortening sticks
3 cups C & H powdered sugar (or other gluten free confectioner's sugar)
1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease two 9-inch round cake pans with gluten free cooking spray or canola oil. In medium bowl, combine flour, tapioca starch, xanthan gum, sugar, cocoa, salt, and baking soda. Mix together until combined. In a large bowl, combine remaining ingredients. Add dry mixture to wet ingredients, whisking together until fully combined. Pour into greased cake pans and bake 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Let cake fully cool. In the meantime, combine soy cream cheese and shortening sticks in a medium bowl. Mix with electric mixer until fluffy. Add the vanilla extract and beat again until combined. Slowly add the 4 cups of powdered sugar until frosting is smooth and spreading consistency. Assemble cake by placing one cake round on the bottom, fully frosting, and then placing second cake round on top. Decorate with Cake Mate's Perfect Pearls and Shimmer Silver Cupcake Gems (all Cake Mate Decorating Gems are gluten free).



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