So for Valentine's day and my pseudo-sister's 18th birthday, I made a red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting. Both recipes are from past blogs of mine... I used a 12 inch heart shaped pan and a 6 inch heart shaped pan. I doubled both recipes (but kept the sugar on the frosting recipe at 2 1/2 cups). I ended up having enough to make 10 cupcakes as well.
I found that even though I let the cake cool in the refrigerator, the crumb coat that I put on still made the cake crumb a bit. I think the frosting was still too cold and wasn't going to spread as nicely as it did later, but it's okay b/c the frosting had a light speckled look to it, which was kinda cool looking. Plus the second coat kinda covered most of it, so it didn't look bad at all.
I also found a trick to making cream cheese frosting a little more smooth looking. I put on powderless gloves and got a moist paper towel and smoothed it out w/ my gloved fingers. I used the paper towel to wipe off the excess that stuck to the gloves and then the wetness that lingered on the gloves helped smooth it out even better. I was having a heck of a time w/ the spatula I normally use b/c this cake wasn't a normal flat, round or square cake. I got the frosting on there w/ the spatula, but for some reason, it just kept pulling the frosting off when I went to smooth it out. It worked so well and the cake was completely smooth!
The icing for the letters and the decoration on the bottom layer was just the frosting w/ tons of extra powdered sugar (I'm not sure how much extra I used) to make it stiffer and food coloring. For the little red swirly stuff, I just took some wax paper (I didn't have parchment paper, otherwise I would have used that, it's much stronger!) and made a cone out of it, making the tip super super tiny. Then I squeezed and just swirled it around.
The top heart was made using a stencil and red sugar crystals.
The letters were done w/ a small round tip and a disposable plastic bag. I would have done the letters even smaller, but the cut the bag to fit the tip and it was too big for the smallest tip :(
Since the cake was too big to fit in one of my cake pans, I bought some 14 inch cardboard rounds from Michaels and covered it with foil to make it not look ugly. When I put the cake on the round, I laid some wax paper around the edges so when I frosted the cake, the board wouldn't get all covered in frosting and stuff. Don't put the paper underneath the cake too much, otherwise, you may never get it off w/out pulling the cake apart.
The cake tasted great, as usual. Light and fluffy and just a hint of cocoa. The frosting was great too. I had a little bit extra that I am going to save to try on these other cupcakes I am getting a recipe for soon (Amanda made these fantastic strawberry cupcakes w/ strawberry frosting, she's emailing me the recipe) and I thought it would be nice on top of some of them.
Happy 18th Birthday Brenna!!!