There’s only one thing I’ve ever tried to make/bake more than once and had multiple failures. Sure, I’ve overbaked, underbaked, missed an ingredient (say, butter) here and there, but those things are seemingly easily corrected. But with chalk white frosting, I had multiple total failures, like throw it into the trash-type failures. Ouch. And every year for her birthday, my mom wants her red velvet cake with chalk white frosting.
Yes, red velvet cake, incredibly hip these days, showing up at Starbucks in muffins, cake pops, and even whoopie pies. But my mom has loved this cake basically as far back as I can remember. My first memory of baking is with my sister, trying to make my mom’s birthday cake… Let’s say maybe I was 7. Well, the cake was a total disaster: somehow we must have omitted the leavener, leaving us with two layers each about 1/4″ thick. Yikes.
This frosting seems special. Most people stick with cream cheese frosting for red velvet, but my mom reserves that for carrot cake. This chalk white frosting is not overly sweet, mostly carrying the flavor of butter with some vanilla. How did I finally learn how to make this frosting? Well, after three ruined batches, I finally had my mom show me how. It turns out that I hadn’t been cooking the flour mixture long enough, and the excess liquid was causing the butter mixture to separate.
Chalk White Frosting
78 g flour (0.5 c)
366 g whole milk (1.5 c)
1.5 c butter (3 sticks), softened
312 g sugar (1.5 c)
1 t vanilla extract
Combine the flour and milk in a small saucepan. (need to try: add just a little milk to make slurry, then add st of milk.) Heat over medium heat with stirring until very very thick, about 10 minutes. Mixture should be as thick as pudding, or else there will be too much liquid for the next step. Let cool, about 20 minutes.
In a stand mixer, beat butter and sugar until fluffy, then add the flour mixture one spoonful at a time, high speed. Scrape bowl as needed. To finish, add vanilla and beat until combined.
Frost cake immediately if possible. Store in refrigerator.