Words of Wisdom

In life, we have to choose between the jeans and the cookie jar. Liz Hurley chose the jeans and I chose the cookie jar

~ Nigella Lawson....(on women's body image and her own voluptuous body)

Monday, February 15, 2010

I made Red Velvet Cupcake with Cream Cheese Frosting

I felt like making these little red cuppies again for quite some time. Honestly, I do not know how Red Velvet is supposed to taste like.

I bought a can of evaporated milk on Friday and decided to use it. You're supposed to use buttermilk but I'm not bothered to buy a small pack of heavy cream to make buttermilk (nobody seems to sell buttermilk in my country). So, I'd just sour that evaporated one with vinegar.

So, here is my actual recipe because I was not bothered to buy expensive cake flour to mix with baking powder. Self-raising flour would do. At least I knew the cake would rise.

Red Velvet Cupcake (using evaporated milk)

1 1/4 cup self-raising flour
good pinch of salt
1 1/2 tbs cocoa powder
2 tbs red food colouring
1/4 cup butter
3/4 cup caster sugar
1 egg Grade A
1/2 cup soured evaporated milk (1/2 tbs vinegar + enough milk to make 1/2 cup)
1/2 tsp red cane vinegar (you may use any vinegar)


Creaming Butter for red Velvet Cake
1. Cream butter and sugar

Cocoa-added red velvet batter
2. Add cocoa and mix well

Red Vevet Batter with red colouring
3. Add the food colouring

4. Add the flour and slowly carefully fold in with a 'manual mixer'.
red Velvet Batter
(Actually I was scared of overmixing!)

5. Spoon the mixture into the paper cups
Red Velvet before baking

6. Bake at 180degC for 10-15 minutes or till a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.

Red Velvet after baking
The Red Velvet Cupcake after baking
(Picture taken at night with dining room light and no flash)

My Cream Cheese Frosting

1/4 cup butter
8oz size cream cheese (I used about 270g ha...ha..)
2 1/2 cup icing sugar (I used only 1 1/4 cup of sugar only as that's the max sweetness that I can take. Western recipes are always oversweet to me)
2 tsp vanilla extract (I'm crazy when it comes to vanilla extract)


1. Beat butter and cream cheese together till soft and fluffy.
2. Add vanilla extract.
2. Add sugar 1/4 cup at a time till you get your desired sweetness. Some recipes even call for FOUR cups of sugar. Not me.

The Texture

Red Velvet with Cream Cheese
I don't like the 'air vents' in the middle. I want an all-around dense cupcake but I've noticed each time I use milk, this would happen to me.

They rose well. Thanks to the fool-proof self-raising flour. Make sure the flour is fresh.

The Moistness

They cupcakes stay moist when I kept them in a covered plastic container.
The ones I left exposed to open air dried a bit on the outside but the inside and the Top remained moist.
Bear in mind that I live in Malaysia where it is scorching HOT at the moment. Even the fans at max speed blow only hot air on your skin.

The Colour

Red Velvet with Cream Cheese
I'm satisfied with the colour. This picture was taken using natural daylight. Now I know the proportion of colour I need to use next time.

The Taste

Red Velvet with Cream Cheese

The milk taste is pretty noticeable. Maybe it's because of the evaporated milk which is denser than regular fresh milk though not as dense as heavy cream.

The cream cheese frosting tasted first.

I don't know whether it was the heat causing some bacterial reaction or I really was supposed to add that much sugar. By evening, I slathered the frosting on the cupcake and tasted like vomit.

I don't remember the frosting tasting like that in the beginning. Thank God I kept half of the original mixture in the fridge right after preparation. I checked that one in the fridge and it tasted like cream cheese.

Lesson learned

Never ever leave your cream cheese frosting in the open air if you live in a hot country like mine. Our 'room temperature' is from another level.

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