Happy Valentine’s Day!

Happy Valentine’s Day to everybody, and I’m not just referring to those who are currently married or enjoying couplehood… I’m referring to everyone with the potential to love another human being and be loved in return; which again, is pretty much everybody (or so I would like to believe).

I especially wish my parents a happy day! They live in Florida and I do not get to see them as often as I would like. My little brother has also moved out to go to college and my parents are currently lonely at home and I know they wish we lived closer. They have a great relationship and love each other very much and I’m very grateful for having them as role models.

Valentine’s Day is pretty low key around here…I usually bake something delicious for dessert, and John often cooks a fancy dinner and scavenges for some awesome wine to go along. However, he is particularly excited about tonight’s dinner, which will be supposedly, a surprise. There are food items wrapped in plastic bags in the back of the fridge which I’m not allowed to look at… and last night when I opened the freezer door looking for bacon a pint of Ben and Jerry’s came flying out..can’t say he’s the greatest surprise planner, but he tries hard and I love him lots for it!

I made these Red Velvet Cupcakes for tonight and also to bring along to our neighbors who just had a little baby. I used Paula Deen’s recipe and although I did modified it a bit, the cupcakes turned out pretty great! Enjoy!

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Adapted from Paula Deen’s recipe at Food Network
Makes 12 cupcakes
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INGREDIENTS

For the cupcakes

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons red food coloring (more or less according to preference)
  • 1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 2 (8 oz) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Chocolate Hearts

5 individually wrapped squares (1 oz each) of Baker’s semisweet chocolate

   

   

DIRECTIONS

For the cupcakes

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 12-cup muffing pan with cupcake papers.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, add together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder. In a large bowl gently beat together the oil, buttermilk, eggs, food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla (correct the color at this point).
  3. Add the sifted dry ingredients to the wet and mix until smooth and thoroughly combined (do not overmix).
  4. Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake tins about 2/3 filled. Bake in oven for about 20 minutes, turning the pans once, half way through. Test the cupcakes with a toothpick for doneness.
  5. Remove from oven and cool completely before frosting.

For the Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese and the sugar on low speed, until incorporated. Add the vanilla, increase the speed to high and mix until very light and fluffy.
  2. Frost the cupcakes according to preference. I used Ateco 826 as my tip and began in the center by piping a dollop and then proceeding to move around it outward and while keeping the piping bag vertically straight.

Chocolate Hearts

  1. Find a heart shape online. Copy and paste it into your word processor. Reshape it according to preference and print. Cut the shape out and use it to outline the heart shapes in parchment paper. Place the parchment paper on a baking sheet that can fit in your fridge horizontally. Secure the edges of the parchment paper to the baking sheet with masking tape.
  2. Melt the chocolate in the microwave, according to package instructions; allow the melted chocolate to cool down a bit for ease of use and then transfer to a piping bag. Cut the tip of the piping bag to have a very small opening and pipe the chocolate on the parchment paper following the outline of the hearts. Fill the inside of the outline with whatever design you would like but making sure the lines are interconnected for better support.
  3. Put the baking sheet with the piped chocolate hearts in the fridge for 50 min to 1 hour or until firm.
  4. Carefully remove the chocolate hearts from the parchment paper and place on the cupcakes once ready to serve.
  5.  Do not leave the cupcakes with the chocolate hearts sitting outside the fridge for long since the chocolate may melt.
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4 thoughts on “Happy Valentine’s Day!

  1. Pingback: Gorgeous edible chocolate heart topper on red velvet cupcakes, plus recipe link | Delicious Recipes

  2. Pingback: Sort-of-red Velvet Cupcakes « black cat chronicles

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