Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare two 8" pans with nonstick spray and parchment paper - I use square pans
In a small bowl mix the cocoa powder and red food coloring together and set aside.
In a large bowl beat the shortening and sugar together until fluffy.
In another bowl mix the eggs, buttermilk, vanilla,
To the bowl of shortening and sugar, add the flour and buttermilk mixture alternating between the two. Mix well after each addition. Add the salt
Pour the cocoa powder mixture into the bowl and mix until combined.
In a small bowl mix the vinegar and baking soda, then mix into the batter until combined.
Pour the batter between the two baking pans. Bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool on racks for before removing from pans.
Butter Roux Frosting
In a heavy saucepan whisk the flour and milk together and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until smooth and thick, about 10 - 14 minutes.
Remove from heat and transfer to a bowl. Place a piece of plastic over the mixture. Let the mixture cool completely, about 30 - 45 minutes in the fridge This will be thick like pudding.
Beat the sugar and butter for about 5 minutes until fluffy, then add the vanilla.
Add the cooled flour milk mixture in thirds, beating well after each addition until smooth and creamy.
Frosting the cake
Once the cake has fully cooled place one layer on a cake plate with the bottom facing up to get a nice flat surface then spoon the icing onto the middle of the cake. With a large icing knife spread the icing to the sides of the cake. Top with the second layer of cake, again flip the cake over and spoon the icing onto the middle of the cake and spread to the sides. To achieve the pretty scallops on the sides of the cake use a #1 icing tip to pipe rosettes around the edge of the cake.You can leave the side unfrosted if you like or frost the sides.
Perfect Piping Buttercream
Mix the butter until smooth and fluffy, then add the cream, cornstarch, and salt.
Scrape the bowl then add the sifted powdered sugar in batches. Beat to combine and scraping bowl occasionally.
Add the almond extract.
Adjust the consistency of the icing by adding more powdered sugar or more cream for your desired piping.
Add food coloring.
This is a crusting buttercream so keep a plastic wrap over the bowl. This buttercream can be stored in the refrigerator for two weeks or it can be frozen for six months.
Most times I use 2 oz. of food color to obtain a deeper red color.8" round cake pans can also be used.One Hot Oven provides approximate nutritional information as a courtesy and cannot guarantee the accuracy for any recipe on this blog.