Saturday, August 28, 2010

Red Velvet Cupcakes

My next cupcake was a Red Velvet cupcake.  This is one of my favorite cakes, and is the cake I like having for my birthday each year.  I have never made it before, either as a cake or a cupcake.

The recipe, shown here, was not terribly difficult.  I did make one mistake on this recipe though.  When I went to the grocery store on Monday I got red gel paste, like the recipe called for.  Or at least I thought it was the correct red gel paste.  I bought one of the tubes of red gel coloring that is in the baking aisle, but it turns out that the correct gel coloring comes in a small container, and is much more concentrated than the tube of red gel.  The recipe stated that I could use a bottle (yes, a whole bottle....) of red food coloring.  The problem with that is that it is really difficult to find.  I did look at Fred Meyer, but didn't see it.  If I make these cupcakes again, I will have to get the right coloring.

Since I didn't get the correct coloring for the cupcakes, they turned out brown with a hint of red color.  I ended up using the whole tube of red gel coloring, instead of just 1/2 teaspoon.  Even with the extra gel, they were still brown.

One thing that I learned from the cookbook was that originally Red Velvet cupcakes were made with vinegar and baking soda.  The reaction between the vinegar and baking soda was used to enhance the natural redness of chocolate.  Eventually red food colorings were added to make them a bright red.

I was a little rushed for time while making these cupcakes, so I made 15 regular size cupcakes, and 12 mini cupcakes.  The regular size cupcakes needed an extra minute or two, past the 20 minutes called for in the recipe.  I think these cupcakes were actually filled a bit too much, but since I didn't make all regular size cupcakes, it was hard to tell if they were filled too much.  The mini cupcakes only needed to bake for about 10-12 minutes.  They are about half the size of the regular size cupcakes, so it makes sense that they should only bake for half the time.

The frosting called for these cupcakes was a cream cheese frosting.  I had extra frosting leftover from the Zucchini Spice cupcakes a few days earlier.  I kept it in the refrigerator, in an airtight container.  It can keep like that for a few days.

To use the frosting, I had to get it back close to room temperature.  Then it needed to be mixed up again in the mixer.  It was pretty easy to to get it back to where it could be spread on the cupcakes.

I am adding a photo album to the blog, where I will be adding photos of my cupcakes.  I am going to try and take pictures of all the ones I make going forward, starting with the Red Velvet cupcakes.  Let me know what you think.

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