I am on top of it this month! Yesterday I baked up the Have the Cake February challenge: Red Velvet Cupcakes.
Now I will admit, I recently tasted a red velvet cupcake and I was not impressed. I had one of the cupcakes from Starbucks and it was not that great, so I was a bit worried about making my own. I mean, what was I going to do with a whole bunch of cupcakes I didn't care for? So I figured I would give them a try when they would coincide with an event: playgroup. That way I wouldn't be stuck with 24 cupcakes, which isn't a good idea even if they taste wonderful.
Anyway, again this month the recipe sounded good but was given in metric and I didn't have
the patience the tools to convert. So I hunted down another Food Network recipe. This time around it was from Paula Deen. Hmm... Now I used to watch a lot of Food Network and there are cooks I like and those I can't stand. Paula falls into the second category. I don't care for her personality, her cooking style or her choice of recipes. But, she was the only one who had a recipe for cupcakes and it was similar enough in ingredients to the posted one so I figured it couldn't be all bad.
I started out by mixing my dry ingredients: flour, sugar, soda, cocoa powder and salt. Then I read they had to sifted. Ugh.
Onto the wet ingredients. This is where I started making it up. First, I never buy buttermilk. It just goes bad (bad-der?) in my fridge after the initial use, which never uses up the whole big thing you have to buy. So I sour my own with skim milk and vinegar.
Second, we are cooking egg free since finding out my son is allergic and we want him to be able to enjoy what we do. A lot of people have suggested using egg beaters but I don't care for the taste or texture of those so for baking I discovered you can use a tablespoon of flaxmeal mixed with water and you have a healthy egg substitute.
Alright, so I started adding the wet ingredients into my mixer when I discovered I only had a cup of oil and it was a mix of safflower and olive. Since one and a half cups seemed like a lot of oil I just dumped in what I had. So then in went the milk, "eggs", vanilla and vinegar. I was getting ready to add the food coloring when I discovered I only had a few drops of red left. However, I had a full bottle of pink and I figured that's a valentine color too so in it went. After mixing in the dry goods I had a bunch of pink batter.
Into the cups and into the oven. Since I only have one muffin tray I had to bake in two batches and I realized that letting the batter sit for a bit seemed to produce smoother tops on the cupcakes.
The ones on the left were straight from the bowl after mixing while the ones on the right sat in the bowl for 30 minutes while the first cooked.
After they cooled I whipped up some buttercream and it was time to frost.
And there you have it.
Oh, and if your wondering, they taste great. I am glad we shared at playgroup because not only were the mommies excited for treats for them, but my waistline is happy there are no more left in my house to tempt me. And they were surprised to find that something baked that was egg free could taste so good.