Joy the Baker

Red is the new Vanilla

January 24, 2008

These little beauties are the answer to any of life’s little hiccups.  Really.  Say, for example, you fall asleep with a candle burning in the  bedroom of the apartment you share with four other people.  Say, you wake up with the blankets on top of you up in flames… serious flames.  Say, in fear and shock and sleep, you flee your room and  run to your roommate’s room.  You knock furiously.  You knock like your bedroom is on fire, because it is.  You knock, wondering why you’re knocking when your bedroom is on fire. Say, your roommate answers the door is just her underwear, hears your plight through sleepy ears, and follows you in disbelief to your bedroom, which is as you left it, on fire.  Say, your brave roommate tries to help you put out the flames with the  smother technique, using all of your clothes and pillows as fire extinguishers.  It works, no thanks to you.  You were fanning the flames, not smothering them.  Say you and your roommate open your bedroom window and shove the charred remains of your blankets, clothes and pillows out, and watch them drop the three floors to the ground.  How would you thank your brave, kind, talented roommate?  How would you ensure your continued friendship help in future life threatening events?  Red Velvet  Cupcakes.  They work.  I have the friend and the blackened ceiling to prove it.

There are many, many recipes for Red Velvet Cupcakes out there these days.  I’m always experimenting with new formulas.  Sometimes I want more a darker, sexier cake with more chocolate.  Other times I want a bright red vanilla bean cake.  This recipe falls somewhere in the middle.  I’ve adapted this recipe from one of my new favorite cookbooks from the always delicious Citizen Cake in San Francisco.

Print this Recipe!

Buttermilk Red Velvet

adapted from Demolition Desserts

8 Tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temp

1 cup plus 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar

2 large eggs, at room temp

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

2 cups cake flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

3/4 cup buttermilk

2 Tablespoons Red Food coloring

1. Preheat the oen to 325.  Sift together flour, baking powder and baking soda.  Add the kosher salt after sifting and set aside.  Measure out the buttermilk and red rood coloring.  Add the die to the buttermilk for easier incorporation later.

2. Cream the butter and the sugar using an electric mixer, until the mixture is pale and fluffy.  Add the eggs one at a time, letting the eggs beat for 1 mintue in between additions.  Scrape down the bowl in between additions.

3.  Add the dry ingredients alternately with the wet ingredients.  Start by adding one third of the flour mixture.  Mix just to incorporate.  Add half of the buttermilk.  Add another one third of the flour mixture.  Mix to incorporate.  Add the last half of buttermilk, followed by the last third of flour.

4. Spoon into paper lined cupcake pans.  Check the cupcakes after 12 minutes.  Makes 12.

I topped these cupcakes with cream cheese frosting and chocolate ganache.  Those recipes to follow.

Red Velvet Cupcakes.  They’re all the rage now for a reason… because they taste delicious, and can help you thank a friend after an apartment fire.  The candle on top of the cupcake… well I guess that’s just ironic.


19 Comments Add A Comment

  • Oh so very pretty your cupcakes look. They look like Red Velvet hi hat cupcakes!!! Am not a big fan of RVC (esp. the toxic red type), but I wouldn’t pass them up either. Now if a RV Hi Hat cc would present itself to me, I just might jump on the scarlet bandwagon.

  • While perusing your cupcake lists I noticed something familiar. The cake stand in this posting is the same one I just bought! I stakeout antique stores and thrift stores weekly trying to find neat and interesting vintage cake stands, but this one? I found on ebay…yes I cheated.

    But its so darn cute!

    …and the cupcakes look good too. :)

  • These were awful!! They tasted like cornbread.

  • Thanks for this recipe! I doubled this for a four-layer cake for my Dad’s birthday (he’s from the south–the rest of us aren’t) and he was thrilled. Everyone else took a piece to be polite. You made me a rock star with my family! I used your brown sugar cream cheese icing and decorated the cake with fudge sauce. Another squiggle of fudge on everyone’s plate and I was a birthday cake hero. Thanks!

  • Hi Joy

    These look fabulous! If I wanted to make them into a 8″ layer cake, would the sponge and frosting quantities be the same? Thanks!

  • these look delicious! i just made them and changed the batter every so slightly. i used AP flour (2 cups minus 4 tablespoons), i added 1 tbsp of cocoa powder and reduced the red food coloring to 1 tbsp. they look and taste good so far. now, onto the frosting.

  • OMG!!this is unbelievably beautiful….actually cup cake porn….the chocolate dripping off the frosting has me salivating!!

  • Bookmarked! I have an engagement cake coming up and this is pretty sexy!
    I love your simple, yet elegant approach. I am all about that. Great blog!

  • Joy, can you tell me what tips you use tto decorate the engagment cake, the chocolate banana cupcakes and the red velvet cupcakes? i’m having a had time getting it just right. Mucho thanks.

  • You take some of the nicest pics I’ve seen in a while. These cupcakes make me want to beg and plead until you consent to deliver a fresh batch to my B-Day party. Which, really, isn’t soon enough so let’s go with V-Day.

  • These look wonderful!

    And, welcome to Daring Bakers, by the way!

  • I love red velvet cupcakes. Going to have to make those again soon.
    Oh – and remember to blow out the candle, will you? :)

  • laurietiff@gmail.com January 24, 2008 at 3:07 pm

    they’re beautiful joy! even if you wanted to forget vermont i don’t think you could… i think i’m going to make these cupcakes this weekend.

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