It began, as so many excellent things do, on Twitter.
Now, as Red Velvet challengers go, Lorna Yee is a formidable one: her recipe comes from her recently published book, The Newlywed Kitchen (which contains this recipe for Chocolate Mudslide cookies, btw), has received rave reviews.
The only way to figure out this battle? A Red Velvet Smackdown, natch!
With the Kingfish Red Velvet Cake in one corner, and Lorna's Red Velvet in the other, we set up a tasting at CakeSpy Shop, with talented photographer Jackie Baisa to document every sweet minute. Of course, cute husbands Danny (aka Mr. CakeSpy) and Henry were on hand to help out.
Lorna was also kind enough to bring a large batch of cupcakes to share with customers at the shop. She ran out of red food coloring at a certain point, so a lucky few actually got Blue Velvet Cupcakes.
So how did these ladies in red stack up?
Well, on the one hand you've got the Kingfish Cafe Red Velvet, which is something of a Seattle standard. It's dense, it's sweet, it's rich...but depending on what day you buy it, sometimes it can be a little dry. Still, I wouldn't kick it out of bed for leaving delicious little crumbs.
But then you've got Lorna's triple-threat of awesome. Equally dense and rich, this is nonetheless a very different cake, with pronounced contrasting flavors: a very tangy and only lightly sweet, very cream cheese-y frosting and a rich, extremely moist cocoa-infused cake. All of the tasters, who were cut generous slices, zeroed right in on the compelling flavor contrast, and were more than happy to wax poetic about the sweet subtleties in flavor--but perhaps even more telling, everybody cleaned their plate.
Similarly, customers who came in and sampled the cupcakes were thrilled with their sweet treats, and Lorna not only sold through her stock of books but also raided nearby Elliott Bay Books for more.
The final word? You should still order the cake if you go to Kingfish, but for your next special occasion, bake the one from Lorna's book. People will remember and love you for it.
Want to see more awesome photos of this event? Visit Baisa Fotograferie (photos coming soon!)