|Red Velvet Cupcake|
Pretty, isn't it! Do you remember from my previous posts about the perfect chocolate cake from Hershey's? Well, if not, let me remind you. It's my favorite cake recipe to use and I wouldn't dare change it for the world, until now. I've tried for years to make a red velvet cake recipe that tasted good, looked good and was moist, but held its shape. I failed miserably each time. Oh, I'd get it almost right, but the cake would be too moist, or too firm, but not just right. Until now.
The original recipe is here, but I've adapted it to make my own version. I don't like a really, really red cake. It tends to stain your teeth, your clothes and your fingers, if you're so inclined to use them. This is still red, but a deeper red and still pretty!
You'll need to preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. Why not 350? Well, I want the cupcakes to bake at a lower, slower temperature so that they bake evenly, and don't have any unsightly humps on them. I know, that sounded really weird.
Red Velvet Cake Mix
2 cups granulated sugar
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3 Tbsp. HERSHEY'S Cocoa
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 small box of chocolate instant pudding mix
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup water
1 oz. bottle of red food coloring
In a large mixing bowl, sift together the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt and pudding mix. Using a whisk, stir the dry ingredients until well incorporated. In a second bowl, mix the wet ingredients (minus the food coloring) together. Now, using a mixer on low-medium speed, slowly incorporate they dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Once they're thoroughly incorporated, add the bottle of red food coloring, being careful not to splash it on you or your kitchen. It stains! If you prefer a brighter red, only use 1-2 Tbsp. of cocoa powder.
|See, the color isn't too red, but you can still see what kind of cake it is!|
Now here's the trick for really pretty cupcakes. Using jumbo sized muffin tins, spray them with baking spray, placed a regular size cupcake liner in the pan and fill the liner almost 3/4 full of batter. This will result in about 18 thicker, wider cupcakes, versus the 24 you would normally get from a cake mix. Bake at 325 for about 18-20 minutes, until when tested with a toothpick, the pick comes out clean.
Cool in the pan for 10-15 minutes and gently move to a cooling rack to continue cooling. Once cooled, get ready to frost them. This frosting is so easy and it's my go-to recipe for red velvet and carrot cake recipes.
Cream Cheese Frosting
1 stick of butter, at room temperature
1 8 oz. block of cream cheese, at room temperature
2 lbs. confectioner's sugar (powdered sugar, if you please)
2 Tbsp. vanilla
1 Tbsp. milk
In a mixing bowl, mix butter and cream cheese until incorporated. Slowly add powdered sugar, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl. About halfway through, add vanilla and milk, mix. Add remaining sugar and continue mixing. If you want a variety of colors, split frosting into equal amounts and using food coloring, add a drop or two and mix until you get the desired shade. I split mine into thirds but only used two colors. The remainder will come in handy for another recipe!
|Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting|
Using a large pastry bag with a jumbo open star tip, I started in the center of the completely cooled cupcake and literally just went in a circle to form the rosette. On a couple of the cupcakes (in pink), the consistency wasn't right yet and it was just a pretty swirl. I didn't get any complaints. If you don't want to waste your pastry bags, you can create a variegated color on your cupcakes by simply putting the darker color in the same bag as the lighter colored frosting. I squeezed out any excess white frosting that I didn't want to use and added the pink in the same bag. Give it a light squeeze to get it started and the results are on the bottom right of the picture above.
These got rave reviews last night and I had a leftover one for breakfast this morning. What? It has cream cheese in it! :P Check back soon for the recipe for the leftover frosting OR you can simply load the cupcakes up with a really thick frosting and enjoy the whole batch!