Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Valentine's Day Red Velvet Cupcakes

I hope everyone had a great holiday weekend...for both Valentine's Day and President's Day.  My weekend was a little longer than some...being a state employee really does have it's perks sometimes!  Then, yesterday I was out of the office all day on business and didn't have a chance to post any blogs.  So!  Let's try and catch up a little...

I want to share an awesome Valentine's Day recipe that I have made for dessert the last two years.  And after tasting them again this year, I've decided that they're going to have to be an annual Valentine's Day tradition for David and I.  We both love it and I'm officially denoting it as a "Dave's Faves." 

I love red velvet cake, always have and always will.  What's funny is that a lot of people think that red velvet is a specific flavor of cake and that it has some special ingredient...  Nope.  It's simply a mild chocolate cake with cream cheese icing.  So, if you like chocolate and cream cheese...yep, you'll like it.

I got this recipe from an old Wal-Mart recipe catalog that I "borrowed" from one of my aunts.  Ahem...yea, she really just let me have it and made me promise to share recipes I enjoyed out of it.  I'm sharing it now, right?

Also, this recipe makes really tasty cake batter...if you're into swiping your finger on the side of the bowl or the beaters.  Not that I'm encouraging you to since this recipe includes raw eggs...I'm just sayin'...we did.

1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter; softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk (I always use half and half)
1 tbsp liquid red food coloring
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp vinegar

8 oz. package softened cream cheese (suggests 1 tsp lemon juice stirred in-I never do)
4 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1. Cupcakes: Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Line 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners.  In a small bowl, whisk flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  In a large bowl, with mixer on medium speed, beat butter and sugar until light and creamy.  Beat in eggs, one at a time.  In a glass measure, combine buttermilk, food coloring, vanilla and vinegar.  With mixer on low, beat in flour mixture in thirds, alternating with buttermilk mixture; until blended. 

Beat 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally, until batter is smooth. 

Divide batter evenly among muffin cups.

2. Bake 18-22 minutes, until a pick inserted into cupcakes comes out clean.  Let cool in pan 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

3. Frosting: In a large bowl, with electric mixer on medium, beat cream cheese and butter until well blended.  Add confectioners; sugar and vanilla and beat until smooth and fluffy.  Frost cupcakes, and refrigerate to firm up frosting.  Bring to room temperature before serving.

Makes 8 servings, with leftovers (12 cupcakes***).  Each cupcake: 343 calories, 29 g fat, 5 g protein and 40 g carb

***Both times I have made this recipe it has made 15 cupcakes.

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