Monday, November 17, 2014

Baking Monday – (Not) Red Velvet Cupcakes

I had avoided red velvet cake for years, because of the crazy amount of food dye, something that I try not to use too much of. Then last year, I had an order for red velvet cupcakes and realized: Hey! These are pretty tasty! and wondered how they'd turn out without the dye.

A bit of history ... the "red" in red velvet occurs as a reaction between the cocoa powder and acidic vinegar and buttermilk, that would naturally turn the batter a reddish hue. "Brown Velvet Chocolate Cake" was apparently popular back in the 1940's (I'll have to look up that recipe sometime!) It's unclear who eventually decided to pump up the color with lots of food dye.

Of course, they are just as tasty without any extra coloring. The cake is not as spectacular as traditional red velvet, and not the deep brown of chocolate, but nice looking just the same! A nice in-between cupcake ... not super chocolatey, but not plain vanilla!

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