May 29, 2009

Can't Beet Red Velvet Cupcakes

3/4 cup beet puree
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup flour
1/2 cup dutch process cocoa (I used Guittard's Cocoa Rouge)
1/2 cup canola oil
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon plain yogurt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 eggs, at room temperature

roux frosting

Preheat oven to 350. Grease or line 12 wells in a cupcake pan. Whisk together the dry ingredients. Set aside. Mix together the oil, yogurt, beet puree, vinegar, milk and eggs. Slowly add the dry ingredients. Mix thoroughly. Fill 2/3 of the way full. Bake for 15 minutes or until a toothpick in the center of the center cupcake comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack before icing.


My thoughts:
Today is my husband's birthday and he requested cupcakes. He said he wanted red velvet. Of course I already had a go-to recipe for that but when I mentioned to him that I had heard of beets being used to naturally redden the cupcakes, he was intrigued. So I came up with this recipe. The beets not only redden the batter (and your hands) they also add sweetness and tons of moisture to the cakes. They are less red than the chemically laced variety but the beets and dutch processed cocoa does a pretty good job. They do have the classic "velvet" texture though. While the cupcakes themselves are slightly nontraditional, I frosted them with the classic accompaniment to a red velvet cake, a roux based frosting. And no, they don't taste particularly beet-y.