Saturday, 11 February 2012

Red Velvet Cupcakes

Red Velvet Cupcakes are very popular; a vibrant red sponge with a rich chocolaty flavour, usually topped with a luscious cream cheese frosting. However messy they are to eat, they are certainly worth getting your face covered in cream cheese frosting, spilling it all down your shirt, sucking at the paper case to make the most of every last crumb of moist chocolaty sponge. Here's the recipe I always use for Red Velvet Cupcakes - perfect for Valentines Day, or any day for that matter.

Red Velvet Cupcakes
makes 18

90g unsalted butter
225g caster sugar
2 medium eggs
30g cocoa powder
½ tsp vanilla extract
40ml red food colouring
225g self raising flour
¾ tsp bicarbonate of soda
165ml buttermilk

for the cream cheese frosting:

200g cream cheese
75g unsalted butter
450g icing sugar
1 tbsp warm water
1 tsp vanilla extract

Beat the butter and sugar together with an electric whisk until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time and continue to beat together. In a separate bowl mix together the cocoa, vanilla and food colouring. Mix to a dark paste. Add to the sugar/egg mixture and beat well. Mix in half the buttermilk, then half the flour, then the remaining buttermilk and remaining flour. Add the bicarbonate of soda, beating slowly at first then increasing slightly until everything is combined. Fill 18 muffin cases with mixture, each two-thirds full. Bake for 20 minutes in a preheated oven at 170C. For the frosting, beat together the sugar and butter with the water. Add the cream cheese and beat until smooth and glossy. Finally, mix in the vanilla. Spread or pipe over the cooled cupcakes.

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