Red Velvet Cake is a cake whose origins is full of mystery. I like a good mystery. I like a good cake! Was it invented at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City? Was it invented in the South? Was it invented in Canada? (YES, maybe in Canada!No offense to my Canadian friend;) When was it invented?
A red velvet cake was featured in the 1989 film Steel Magnolias, which led to a great resurgence of Southerners recreating the recipe for themselves. The armadillo-shaped red velvet cake served as a groom’s cake for one of the film’s main character. In 2002, the Red Velvet cake became even more popular when Jessica Simpson served a towering hexagonal version at her wedding to Nick Lachey. I admit it…I cried when they broke up!! Did you?
The color is stunning! The deep red color of the cake contrasting with a fluffy, snowy white icing is a little naughty… and oh so nice!
Christmas Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe
yields approx: 2 1/2 dozen cupcakes
- 1 1/2 cups of sugar
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter, room temperature
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 2 1/3 cups of cake flour*
- 2 tablespoons of Dutch-processed cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon of baking soda
- 1 teaspoon of baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt
- 1 cup of buttermilk**
- 1 1/2 tablespoons of red food coloring
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon of distilled white vinegar
- 1/2 cup of butter (1 stick), room temperature
- 8 oz of Philly cream cheese (1 package), room temperature
- 2 – 3 cups of powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 1-2 regular sized candy canes, crushed
- colored sprinkles (optional)
**You can make your own buttermilk by adding a tablespoon of distilled white vinegar to milk and letting it stand for about 10 minutes.
1 Preheat the oven to 350°F. Beat the butter and sugar in an electric mixer for 3 minutes on medium speed until light and fluffy.
2 Add the eggs, one at a time, beating until each is fully incorporated. Be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl to ensure even mixing.
3 In a large bowl, sift together the cake flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In another bowl whisk together the buttermilk, vinegar, vanilla extract, and red food coloring *(it will fizz!).
4 Add a fourth of the dry ingredients and mix, then add a third of the wet. Continue adding in a dry, wet, dry pattern, ending with the dry ingredients.
5 Scoop into cupcake papers (I use an ice-cream scoop), about 1/2 to 3/4 of the way full. Bake for 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Rotate the pan after the first 15 minutes of baking to ensure even baking.
6 Allow to cool for one minute in the pan then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Makes about 2 1/2 dozen cupcakes.
1 Cream the butter and cream cheese together, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure even mixing.
2 Add the vanilla extract and mix.
3 Add the powdered sugar, continually taste to get to desired sweetness. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes.
Recipe adapted from Saveur
To sift or not to sift the flour? Rose Levy Beranbaum (author of The Cake Bible) says that the main reason for sifting is to separate and aerate the flour particles to make them absorb liquids better. Sometimes I sift. And sometimes I whisk with my handy-dandy whisk. It’s up to you . Tell me, do you prefer sifting?
You should definitely be aware that it will be messy! I mean, messy red batter kind of messy! It may splatter. If you like your clothes you have on that day: wear an apron! Be sure to keep scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula while you mix. Since all ovens are different, make sure you check the cupcakes a little early. Mine were ready in under 20 minutes. Yours may be done sooner, or a minute or two longer.
Enjoy the cupcakes with your sweetheart. Your neighbor. Your cute kid. By yourself!
I am linking my Christmas Red Velvet Cupcakes to Cupcake Tuesday. Check out Liz’s adorable Gingerbread Pop Cupcakes.