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Heart Cake Two Ways — Beginner and Expert


Baking up a heart cake is a delicious way to celebrate Valentine's Day. The only difference a heart cake has from a regular cake is the shape — which makes the cake festive and special. I've found two recipes for you to experiment with. One is simple and requires no extra equipment. The other is a little more difficult and involves a heart-shaped cookie cutter. Take a look at both when you read more.



Beginner Heart Cake
From Kraft Foods

1 pkg. (2-layer size) cake mix, any flavor
2 cups thawed cool whip whipped topping
1-1/3 cups shredded coconut
Red food coloring
2 tbsp. cinnamon red hot candies

  1. Prepare and bake cake mix as directed on package, dividing batter evenly between 8-inch square cake pan and 8-inch round cake pan. Cool completely.
  2. Cut round cake in half. Leave square cake whole.
  3. Place square cake on serving tray in diamond position. Using small amount of whipped topping to hold pieces together, place half circles against top two adjacent sides of square cake to resemble a heart.
  4. Frost cake with remaining whipped topping.
  5. Tint coconut pink with food coloring; sprinkle over frosting. Decorate with candies. Store in refrigerator.

Serves 12.



Expert Heart Cake
From Matt Lewis of Baked

1/4 cup cocoa powder
2 tbsp. red food coloring
6 tbsp. unsalted butter, , room temperature
1 tbsp. plus 1 1/2 teaspoons vegetable shortening, at room temperature
1 2/3 cups sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups cake flour, (not self-rising)
1 tsp. salt
1 tbsp. cider vinegar
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 cup melted dark chocolate, for decorating
Speckled Cinnamon Frosting, recipe below

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F with a rack in the center of the oven. Butter an 18-by-13-inch rimmed baking sheet, line with parchment paper, butter parchment, and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together cocoa powder, food coloring, and 1/4 cup boiling water. Set aside to cool.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together butter and shortening on high speed until smooth. Add sugar and continue beating until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  5. Stir buttermilk and vanilla into cocoa mixture.
  6. Into another medium bowl, sift together flour and salt. With the mixer on low, add flour mixture alternating with cocoa mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat until incorporated.
  7. In a small bowl, mix together vinegar and baking soda until baking soda dissolves; mixture will fizz. Add to batter and mix until just combined.
  8. Pour batter into prepared baking sheet, smoothing the top. Bake until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, 20 to 30 minutes, rotating pan after 10 minutes.
  9. Cool cake completely on a wire rack. Using a 4-inch heart-shaped cookie cutter, cut out 12 hearts.
  10. Place 4 strips of parchment paper around perimeter of a serving plate or lazy susan. Place 1 layer on the cake plate. Spread a thin layer of frosting on the cake; top with another heart, bottom side up.
  11. Cover entire cake with a thin layer of frosting and transfer to refrigerator for 10 minutes. Repeat process with remaining ingredients.
  12. Remove cakes from the refrigerator and cover each cake with a generous layer of frosting, smoothing as you go around to create a flat surface.
  13. Place chocolate in a pastry bag fitted with a small plain round tip; decorate as desired.

Makes six 4-inch heart-shaped cakes.

Speckled Cinnamon Frosting
From Matt Lewis of Baked

1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups milk
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp. heavy cream
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened but still cool, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
Food coloring, in desired color

  1. Whisk together sugar and flour in medium heavy-bottomed saucepan. Add milk and cream and place over medium heat, whisking occasionally until mixture comes to a boil and has thickened, about 20 minutes.
  2. Transfer mixture to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on high speed until cool.
  3. Reduce speed to low and add butter; mix until well incorporated. Increase speed to medium-high and mix until frosting is light and fluffy.
  4. Add vanilla and cinnamon and continue mixing until combined.
  5. Add a couple drops of food coloring while continuing to mix, until desired color is reached.
  6. If frosting is too soft, chill slightly and then remix to proper consistency. If frosting becomes too firm, place bowl over a pot of simmering water and remix to proper consistency.

Makes enough for six 4-inch cakes.

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