Firstly, I would like to say that, no matter what the title says, this is not a red velvet cake. It is supposed to be a red velvet cake so, by its very definition, it should be a chocolatey red colour. Well folks this cake is very much a rich chocolatey brown colour inside, but if you can get over your disappointment long enough to hear me out this cake is seriously good.
For years I have picked up recipes for red velvet cakes and put them down again due to the rather large amount of food colouring used. So when I saw this version made using the natural colour of beetroot by former Master Chef runner up Poh I decided to give it a go. Don’t be put off by the beetroot because when you combine it with the bitter chocolate and the cream cheese icing everything comes together in perfect harmony. It is not a sweet cake although the beetroot does give off a somewhat sweetish flavour.
Any adaptions I have made with this cake are purely accidental and involved a shopping trip without my glasses and bringing home dark drinking chocolate flakes instead of dark drinking chocolate powder…… as Homer Simpson would say DUH!! All that aside, I ended up replacing the drinking chocolate powder with half drinking chocolate flakes and half unsweetened cocoa powder. Don’t worry, I found a use for the chocolate flakes around the outside of the cake which is just as well because my pantry just couldn’t fit another thing in it. Other than that small change, I followed the recipe as it was written here.
Here are a few tips I learnt from making this cake. Firstly, read the instructions before your start, which clearly state to use a pair of rubber gloves. Beetroot is very messy so do yourself a favour and buy a box of disposable food service gloves from the supermarket, trust me you will thank me. If not, prepare to look like the perpetrator of a gruesome crime or like me end up using plastic bags on your hands to avoid staining…. it was not an attractive look! Secondly, wash up as you go or the beetroot juice will get everywhere. Finally, take the baking time as a suggestion only, I ended up baking mine for an extra fifteen minutes.