Our most recent Gastronauts get-together was envisioned as a southern cooking potluck, but shortly after its conception we dropped the idea to focus on southern baking: the Red Velvet Cake. The event took place in Anthony's kitchen where Gastronauts (and friends) prepared the cake with the help of a red Kitchenaid stand mixer. Attendees were encouraged to wear red and/or white and/or velvet and to bring a bottle of red or white wine.
The recipe posed some challenges: using a double boiler to melt the chocolate (we didn't have one) and cooked frosting (this always scares me because it's so complicated). We finally gave up on our makeshift double boiler and put the chocolate in the microwave to melt it. A lifeline was called to assist with the frosting dilemma - we needed to whip more air into it.
Everyone pitched in to help in the preparation - buying ingredients, accurate measuring, cleaning up, opening and pouring wine. One contribution I made was buttering and flouring the pans. This is one of my favorite parts of baking mainly becuase I'm reminded of my mom baking cakes when I was a girl. When she would flour the pans, her wedding ring would tap the side of metal of the pan signalling that we would soon have a yummy treat. That sound makes me very happy.
Overall, our baking experiment was a success. The cakes were moist (though not very red) and the white frosting was fluffy and sweet.
Photos to come.