And what better way to celebrate than with cupcakes, double whoop!
After a year of writing a blog what have I discovered? Well, I’ve discovered that I’m not as good a cook as I thought I was, in fact, I am only just beginning to realise how much I’ve yet to learn. I’ve also discovered that recipes are really helpful, as is actually measuring stuff out correctly! Who would have thunk it?!
I am proud of one thing though; I’m proud that I’ve actually started trying stuff out. For so many years I watched so many cooking shows, read loads of magazines and bought cookbooks like they were going out of fashion. But I never really made anything; just day-dreamed about making stuff. I’m glad to finally be getting my hands (and apron) dirty. It feels great.
I’ve got big plans for Yumbolicious in the next year and I hope to execute at least some of them. I have a few aims too, I’m going to try and cook and post much more fish. I always use the excuse that The Fella is allergic, but if I’m really honest, I’m actually quite apprehensive about cooking fish. I’m also going to learn how to decorate cakes and cupcakes. The red velvet cupcakes I made today are just the beginning, but everyone’s got to start somewhere, right?
Red velvet cupcakes
Makes 12, I used a recipe that I was given while at a class in The Carrick Institute recently.
100 g butter, softened
180 g caster sugar,
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp red food colouring
225 g self raising flour
15 g cocoa powder
120 ml butter milk
For the cream cheese frosting:
80 g butter, softened
80 g cream cheese, softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
160 g icing sugar
First off, preheat the oven to 170 °C. Cream together the butter and sugar with an electric mixer, until nice and pale and fluffy; add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each one is added. Add the vanilla extract and red food colouring to this mixture and combine well.
Sift together the flour and the cocoa powder. Gently fold the dry ingredients, into the wet ingredients, and add the milk. Mix together until just combined, but don’t overwork the batter or it will lose all the lovely air you’ve worked into it. Divide this mixture evenly between 12 cupcake holders and bake for 15 – 18 minutes, until they have risen in the middle and a skewer inserted into them comes out clean. Allow to cool on a wire rack.
Meanwhile, beat together the cream cheese, butter and vanilla for the cream cheese frosting. Sift the icing sugar into the bowl and mix together well. Pop this into the fridge to cool and harden slightly.
Hard as it will be, you should wait until the cupcakes are totally cooled. Decorate as you like with the cream cheese frosting and any other bits and pieces that tickle your fancy.
I know my first attempt at cupcake decorating isn’t going to win me any awards. But I don’t care. The cupcakes were delicious and that’s really all that matters, isn’t it? The Fella has suddenly become very supporting about my cake decorating attempts and is suggesting practise, lots and lots of practise. Now, I wonder why that could be?!