You’ve never seen a purple cake? Then you’ve never been to Frederick’s Pastries, where that theme is the house specialty. A few years back, owner Susan Lozier Robert was getting a lot of requests for Red Velvet Cake, but, she says, “I’m not a fan.” She is a fan of the color purple (one peek inside the purple-painted shop confirms it), and she mused to her head baker, “Why can’t we do purple velvet?” Months of testing and tasting ensued — an “incredibly awesome process,” says Robert — and the end result was Purple Velvet, a look so distinctive the shop has trademarked the name.
On offer are Purple Velvet cupcakes, tortes, cheesecakes, cake truffles, and whoopie pies, all in a rich, startling shade rarely seen in the edible realm. They’re year-round items, especially popular for spring celebrations. Robert and manager Anne Walsh are both stumped when it comes to describing the taste: “It’s delicious,” says Walsh. “It’s got its own flavor.” Close your eyes and you could be eating high-quality yellow cake. But if you eat it with your eyes closed, you’ll miss all the fun. Frederick’s Pastries, 119 Main St., North Andover, 978-208-7806; 109 Route 101A, Amherst, N.H., 603-882-7725; 25 South River Road, Bedford, N.H., 603-647-2253.