Here’s my thing about food coloring: I don’t use it when I’m trying to be subtle. I think the whole point of adding dye to a baked good or cooking project is to create something bright and a little wacky, like swirly icing or ombre layer cookies, in surprising and unexpected shades. Cake the color of regular cake is great on its own, so if you’re going to add pigment, you might as well go big.
This mentality kept me from jumping on the natural food coloring bandwagon for years, despite a desire to leave the artificial stuff behind. With plant-based dye, it seemed impossible to achieve anything other than muted pink, swampy green, and almost-orange—hints at color, little whispers of color, but nothing like the wild, punchy hues I’d hoped for.
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