Sunday, July 2, 2017

Red White and Blue Velvet Cupcakes

  I'm sure you've probably heard of Red Velvet Cake, but have you ever heard of BLUE velvet? Apparently blue velvet cakes became a thing in the early 80s, inspired by the Royal Heirloom Sapphire Engagement Ring. Who knew? I mean, I guess it makes sense. Why do just a red velvet cake when you can make a velvet cake in any color you want?? (I'm thinking maybe green will be next for St Patrick's Day, no?)
 So when it came time to choose a red white and blue something for the 4th of July, I decided that this would be the one to try. The recipe is from, and I'm really pleased with how they turned out! I must admit, they looked like Cookie Monster when I was scooping batter into the cupcake tins, but they look so great under a swirl of cream cheese icing and topped with a red raspberry, they look nothing short of patriotic!
 They're moist and dense with just a hint of that signature buttermilk tang, just as you'd expect from any velvet cake. Also the brilliant blue is so unexpected and just enough of a showstopper to make them the talk of your 4th of July celebration.  If you like red velvet cake, then give this one a try.
I PROMISE you'll love it just as much!

2 cups sugar
2 sticks butter, at room temperature
2 eggs
1 tbs cocoa powder
1 tbs Wilton royal blue gel food coloring
1 small dab of Wilton violet gel food coloring
2 1/2 cups cake flour
1 tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tbs vinegar

Cream Cheese Frosting
Fresh raspberries

 Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare cupcake pan(s) with 24 paper liners.
In a mixing bowl, cream the sugar and butter, mix until light and fluffy. Add the eggs 1 at a time and mix well after each addition. In a small bowl, mix cocoa and food colorings together to form a paste, and then add to sugar mixture; mix well. Sift together flour and salt. Add flour mixture to the creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk. Blend in vanilla. In a small bowl, combine baking soda and vinegar and add to mixture. Pour batter into cupcake papers. Bake for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool completely before frosting them with cream cheese frosting and then top each one with a fresh raspberry.

The original recipe said to bake the cupcakes from 25-30 minutes. I immediately thought "Oh that's WAY too long" and decided to check them at 20 minutes. Turns out this was a good idea!
Not a fan of raspberries? Use strawberries instead!!
And about the food coloring.... the Wilton Food Coloring Gels were easy to find at Michaels craft store. I've read a few articles that said that the addition of the violet food coloring is absolutely crucial to achieving the perfect shade of sapphire blue. Otherwise, they might turn out more of a dark denim blue. Also, if you just add regular blue food coloring instead of the gel, not only will you not get the right color, but your tongue and teeth are more likely to turn blue when you eat them! EEK!

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