Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Red, Blue, and Cheesecake

The Fourth of July is one of the holidays that I've found myself particularly enjoying over the years, likely due to the fact that 1) it occurs during summer, 2) I get to spend quality time with friends, and 3) it gives me an excuse to eat burgers and hot dogs and apple pie and tons of other foods...all in one sitting.

This year, I decided to bake a cake inspired by a dessert I had a while back at, who would've guessed, the Cheesecake Factory. TCF's "Ultimate Red Velvet Cheesecake" is comprised of two alternating layers of red velvet cake and cheesecake and coated with cream cheese frosting. It's delicious, and though I've never made red velvet before (but love to eat it), I decided that now was the time to try.

To celebrate the holiday, I decided to really go for the patriotic theme and decided to stick to three layers, but dye one of the red velvet cake layers blue. In other words, it would be:

red velvet
blue velvet

...hence completing the red-white-and-blue triad.

p.s. The only difference between red and blue velvet is the dye, and you need quite a bit of it to get vibrant colors. Next time I'm going to try a natural base to make my red velvet cake red, sans food coloring.

The cake (cheesecake? layer cake? cakeesecake?) is frosted in a simple homemade cream cheese icing and decorated with sanding sugar. I just love the colors.

It's the season for homemade lemonade, charcoal-grilled burgers, and desserts big enough to go around.
I hope you all had a food-filled fourth and the happiest of holidays