Red Velvet Cake...Red Velvet Cupcakes, Red Velvet Macarons...just about anything. Since yesterday was National Cheesecake Day, I thought I'd get a jumpstart on next year and post a recipe for Red Velvet Cheesecake. This recipe is easy and delicious! It does use red food dye, and I haven't figured out how to use beets in this recipe. You can always use Wilton's red, but it won't give you quite the same color. Sacrifices. Have a look at my post Red Velvet the Natural Way. I think beets would change the flavor in the cheesecake. Cake is more forgiving.
The following recipe for Red Velvet Cheesecake is from Southern Living. I especially like the deep red of the red velvet cheesecake that's spiked with cocoa, the smooth creamy cheesecake layer on top, and the dark chocolate crust. I've made a few adaptations. Not everyone likes to add the frosting on top, but it really is yummy and is a great taste companion. You can always leave it off or reduce the thickness. My preference is to add the cream cheese icing.
RED VELVET CHEESECAKE
Prep: 20 min; Bake: 1 hr. 25 min; Stand: 1 hr; Chill: 8 hrs
1 3/4 cups chocolate wafers whirled and crushed (or 1 1/2 cups chocolate graham cracker crumbs)
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
3 tablespoons unsweetened DARK cocoa
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup whole buttermilk
2 teaspoons Madagascar vanilla
1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
2 (1-ounce) bottles red food coloring
1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Stir together chocolate wafer crumbs (or chocolate graham cracker crumbs), melted butter, and 1 tablespoon granulated sugar; press mixture into bottom of a 9-inch springform pan.
2. Beat 3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese and 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar at medium-low speed with an electric mixer 1 minute. Add eggs and next 6 ingredients, mixing on low speed just until fully combined. Pour batter into prepared crust.
3. Bake at preheated over 325° for 10 minutes (if you're using a waterbath, be sure and preheat the waterbath when you preheat oven); reduce heat to 300°, and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until center is firm. (For a really great cheesecake, bake in a water bath to avoid cracks.) Run knife along outer edge of cheesecake. Turn oven off. Let cheesecake stand in oven 30 minutes. Remove cheesecake from oven; cool in pan on a wire rack 30 minutes. Cover and chill 8 hours.
4. Beat 1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese and 1/4 cup butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth; gradually add powdered sugar and vanilla, beating until smooth. Spread evenly over top of cheesecake. Remove sides of springform pan.