47 ounces was a joke, but it does take a lot of red food coloring.
BDL is right the red velvet cake probably originated in the American South. However, there is some debate on that. There is even some debate as to the color ever coming from the chemical reaction at all. We need to find us a chemist to be for sure.
As a true Belle of the South (I actually owned and wore regularly a hoop skirt at one time) , I can tell you that food coloring has long been used for strange purposes in Dixie. I have no idea why, no one has ever been able to give me a good answer.
However, I vividly recall my maternal grandmother working hard on a from scratch pound cake (she didn’t have an electric mixer until the 1980’s) only to add in an entire bottle of liquid yellow food coloring to the batter as her signature touch. Key lime pies from certain regions are electric green and many a lady used to use various shades of food coloring to zip up their preserves (both sweet and savory).
We is what we is down here (or up here in Tessa’s case).
I thought about the cheese cake version myself, but that would put the cream cheese in it, not on it.
I have never, ever seen fruit used in a red velvet cake. Never heard of it either. That would make it borderline healthy, for goodness sake.
Trust me Boar D Laze, you can get that custard red enough. If you are willing to use one of the larger bottles of Wilton No Taste Red gel food coloring. Disgusting, but true. Keep in mind that the color of red velvet cake isn’t primary red, it is deep blood red. (Remember the groom’s cake in Steel Magnolias that was red velvet and shaped like an armadillo.)
Just so we’re all clear, I hate red velvet cake. But I have made umpteen million of them for clients, and I never could get them to understand that food coloring was really the only thing that made it “special”.
Two of the “classic” Southern “fancy” cakes that I am always called upon to make are red velvet and caramel cake. I’m told mine are excellent, but I am no fan of either variety.
Shameless plug alert: Read the review on A Love Affair With Southern Cooking in the cook book reviews section of the forum, and use the link to Amazon if you want to buy it. It really is a very insightful book on Southern Cooking. It isn’t the end all be all, Southern cooking is too diverse, but it is rather good.