Christopher’s favorite cake is Red Velvet Cake so of course the plan for his graduation was to make him one. Unfortunately Chris was fighting off a rough cough/cold thing last week so he asked me to hold off on the cake because he wasn’t sure he would be well enough to enjoy it. Well, we had to have something special for the day, so I decided to make cupcakes instead. That way he could have a little something that day and be able to save the rest for later in the week when he felt better.
The recipe we used I found on the Food Network recipe site and you can find it here: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/paula-deen/red-velvet-cupcakes-with-cream-cheese-frosting-recipe/index.html
I still had some buttermilk in the frig that I wanted to use up and this recipe used it. I will tell you up front that the cupcakes seem to be a little dry but the frosting was so tasty that no one cared.
Markus decided that he wanted to help on this recipe – which upset Jesse a little because he likes to do every recipe, but there really was not enough to do on this one for more than one kid helper, so Markus had this one on his own, with a little help from me.
So, lets start with the ingredients you will need. For the cupcakes you need the following:
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
- 1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 2 tablespoons red food coloring
- 1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the frosting you need the following:
- 1 pound cream cheese, softened
- 2 sticks butter, softened
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4-5 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
- Chopped pecans and fresh raspberries or strawberries, for garnish
First we took our dry ingredients . . .
and we sifted them together through the metal strainer (I haven’t had time to go out and buy a new sifter yet)
Then we added the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients . . .
mixing until we had a smooth cake batter – which obviously has alot of red food coloring.
This was super simple. We put the butter, cream cheese and vanilla in the bowl . . .
and Markus got back to work with the hand mixer.
In the meantime, I sifted the powdered sugar through the strainer.
Then we added the sugar to the cream cheese mixture to make the frosting.
The recipe calls for 4 cups of powdered sugar, but it needed more because the resulting frosting was a little too soft at room temperature. That is why I adjusted the ingredients to 4-5 cups of powdered sugar. Maybe the heat of the day affected it so start with the four cups and be prepared to add more. We resolved it by putting the frosting in the frig until it hardened up a little bit – about 10 minutes.
Anyway, back to the recipe.
We took the cupcakes out of the oven . . .
frosted them . . .
and then I took some strawberries, sliced into each one so that they fanned out (which the boys were sooooooo impressed by) and put them on top of the cupcakes.
Everyone liked them in the end. When I told Chris that I thought they were a little dry he said that the frosting so made up for it that he didn’t care. So if nothing else, hang onto this frosting recipe.
In searching, most of the red velvet cake recipes were pretty much the same. Seems that vinegar is an essential component along with a small amount of chocolate. I just need to figure out how to give it a more moist texture – I’m thinking that the addition of a pudding mix might do it, but I have to think upon this more. I don’t really want to add a pre-packaged ingredient. Hmmmm. Lots to ponder in my search for a better cake recipe.
Have a great holiday weekend everyone. I am off to work. It has been non-stop this past week and I could really use the long weekend – which will include the annual Boy Scout procession in the Memorial Day parade. Lets hope it doesn’t rain. 🙂