Fire and icing.

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

I finally got down to making my own red velvets.
I got this recipe off another blog and decided to give them a go.
It made 10 smallish cupcakes, so I tweaked the recipe a little.

I made 30 of these from a triple recipe, for a good friend's birthday party on Friday night at the Fire and Ice hotel.
We made the cupcakes the night before, and I was making the icing the next day when I realised
how foolhardy I had been to download a recipe for cream cheese icing that I had never used before.

"How hard is it screw up cream cheese icing," I asked.

Quite easily apparently, as my icing resembled condensed milk more than soft whippy clouds of snow white icing.
I put the mixer on full blast and added some hydrated agar to the mix to set it lightly so it was more fluffy, and that did the trick.

They tasted awesome in the end, even though I was an hour late for the party and the cupcakes had slid all over the box while driving to Town. One of the cupcakes had managed to cement itself to the side of the box, and had to be coaxed out and dusted with more glitter to prevent anyone from noticing.

Red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting
makes 12

For the cupcakes:
80g softened butter
150g castor sugar
1 jumbo egg
15g cocoa powder
5ml vanilla essence
170ml buttermilk
160g cake flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon bicarb
1T white wine or apple cider vinegar
Half a bottle of cakeflora gel colour in red red or burgundy.

For the frosting:
150g cream cheese
50g butter
1-2 cups icing sugar
vanilla essence
*optional: 1/4 teaspoon agar dissolved in 1T boiling water*

Preheat the oven to 170C.
Cream butter and sugar until fluffy.
Add the egg and mix in well.
Make a paste with the cocoa, food colouring and vanilla essence.
Add this to the butter and sugar mix.
Beat in half of the buttermilk, and half of the flour, separately and until well combined.
Repeat with remaining buttermilk and flour.
Mix very well.
Add the salt, bicarb and vinegar and mix un til well combined.
Spoon into cupcake cases and bake for 20 - 25 minutes.

For the icing ingredients, make sure the butter is softened.
Beat the butter and cream cheese together. Add the icing sugar and beat until well combined and fluffy.

If for some reason your icing does not become fluffy clouds of marvellousness for any reason - perhaps the butter or the cream cheese is too soft or you need to blame the weather, add the agar.
Melt the agar powder into the boiling water and leave for a minute. Beat the icing on a very high heat and add the agar mix. This will give it body and it whip nicely.
Add more agar until desired piping consistency has been achieved.

*a scant 1/4 teaspoon of agar was sufficient for this recipe, as it is a very powerful setting agent, use sparingly*


  1. You have a stunning blog! I also still need to try the Red Velvet Cake one day!!