Red Velvet Brownies

The origin of the Red Velvet cake is much debated, but anyone who loves a baked good has no doubt tried a cupcake, cream cheese frosted cake or whoopie pie of the Red Velvet variety. In my opinion they are far too tasty/pretty to ponder over where the recipe once began. Surely time is better spent eating the treats? 😉

So what makes a Red Velvet bake red? Cocoa contains a natural pigment called anthocyanin, which will react with acids such as buttermilk to provide a red shade. Cool food sciencey stuff, really. Buttermilk is almost always included in a traditional Red Velvet recipe, but red colouring is often added to provide a more vibrant shade.

My brownie recipe does not contain buttermilk, but I recently purchased some fabulous new food colourings and I needed an excuse to try them out in one of my favourite colours. So here goes with my ‘Red Velvet’ brownies!

Red Velvet brownies

Makes 10 small brownies or 6 bigger pieces. Freezes well!

Red Velvet Brownie Ingredients 2

Begin by melting the chocolate and butter over a saucepan of hot water – heat gently until smooth, stirring throughout.

Red Velvet Brownies melt butter and chocolate

Red Velvet Brownies melted butter and chocolate

Then mix in the caster sugar, followed by the plain flour. Stir until combined.

Beat the eggs and add gradually. I found that I added a little too much (1 is probably enough, but it depends on the size of your eggs), and I ended up having to add more flour right at the last stage.

Then add the RED! I use food colouring paste (rather than the liquids you can buy in supermarkets) as they give a more vivid colour. I used heaps as I wanted a deep colour, but you can try it out. Note that my mixture is still a little runny (and bubbly!) here, so you can add more flour if necessary.

Cook in a pre-heated oven for around 30 minutes. I tend to do mine for less as I have a fan oven and I like them squidgy in the middle.

I think this is a recipe I will continue to develop, in terms of consistency and redness. I used fairtrade dark chocolate, which affected how vibrant the red was. Perhaps just using cocoa powder will give a brighter shade.

Regardless, they are pretty tasty and I like the deep red!

Red Velvet Brownies

Claire x