The other day Nick was commenting on how much he misses The Little Cupcakes shop in Melbourne. Since it's holiday time and I have plenty of time to spend on cooking, I decided to surprise him with some of his favourite flavoured cupcakes- Red Velvet.
Fun fact: red velvet cupcakes originally were not coloured with food dye but were red due to the unprocessed cocoa reacting with the buttermilk making a rich deep browny red colour. Nowadays it is increasingly difficult to find unprocessed cocoa so food dye is the way to go.
Tip: use a hand electric beater for majority of the method - this helps make the cupcakes fluffier.
This recipe makes about 30 cupcakes.
Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Icing
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder (unsweetened)
- 1 bottle of red food dye (approx. 3 teaspoons)
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 heaped teaspoon baking powder, sifted
- 2 1/2 cups plain flour, sifted
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
- 1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon baking soda, sifted
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar
- 120 grams unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 180 grams light cream cheese (preferably block rather than spreadable), at room temperature
- 2 cups icing sugar (do not use icing mixture - it is not the same thing!)
- Preheat oven to 175 degrees. Place cupcake liners into the muffin tins
- In a small bowl mix together the cocoa and red food dye - ensure there are no lumps
- In a large bowl beat butter and sugar until creamy and light.
- Beat in eggs, one at a time.
- Add cocoa paste and vanilla essence, beat well.
- Add baking powder, salt and 1/3 of the flour. Beat well
- Add half of the buttermilk. Beat
- Add 1/3 of flour. Beat
- Add the rest of the buttermilk. Beat
- Add the rest of the flour. Beat
- In a separate bowl add vinegar and baking soda (don't worry if it fizzes - this is normal). Mix this into the cupcakes batter.
- Fill the muffin tins 3/4 full. Place in oven for around 20 minutes. Check them by placing a skewer into one of the centre muffins and checking if it comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack
- For the icing - beat together the butter until creamy and light. Add the cream cheese and continue beating until fluffy.
- Add the icing sugar a cup at a time and beat until the icing mixture if very fluffy.
- Once the cupcakes are cooled, pipe the icing onto them. Enjoy :D
Note that this icing must be refrigerated.