***Giveaway is closed, but you can still check out these amazing cupcakes!***
Aren't these cupcakes beautiful? I have a wonderful treat for you today! There's a brand new cookbook, Cake Ladies: Celebrating a Southern Tradition, out dedicated to southern cake ladies, their specialty cakes (21 signature recipes) and their love for bringing sweetness into life's most memorable moments. Each profile provides beautiful photographs of the women, their recipes, and the communities that depend on them in their "lives in cake." Seriously, I have a home filled with cookbooks, and I swoon over this one. I have read every page, many times, trying to decide which cake I want to make first. Not only do these Vegan Red Velvet Cupcakes look tempting, but the Pineapple Upside Down Cake, Vanilla Pound Cake, Mississippi Mud Cake, and the Italian Creme Cake look heavenly. I'm leaning towards the Italian Creme Cake.... I'll let you know how it turns out!
Vegan Red Velvet Cupcakes
This vegan, low-fat variation of the classic Southern recipe gets its beautiful color from beets rather than red food coloring. The Cupcake Fairies are interested in offering healthier food to their community, and vegan baking is naturally low in cholesterol and saturated fats.
PREP TIME: 20 minutes (includes peeling, grating, and pureeing beets)
BAKING TIME: 25 minutes
COOLING TIME: 20 minutes
DECORATING TIME: 15 minutes
YOU WILL NEED
FOR THE CAKE:
2 cups soy milk
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
2½ cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
¼ cup natural cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
½ cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
2 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
2 large red beets, about 12 ounces, peeled, shredded, and pureed (you should have about 2 cups of beet puree)
FOR THE ICING:
1 cup vegan margarine (a nonhydrogenated brand is best), at room temperature
1 cup vegan cream cheese, at room temperature
2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
8 cups powdered sugar
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two 12-cup muffin tins with paper cupcake liners.
MIX THE BATTER
Combine the soymilk and the vinegar in a large mixing bowl, and set aside to curdle. In a separate bowl, sift the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. After the soymilk mixture has curdled, add the vegetable oil, vanilla, and applesauce to it, and stir. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, and mix with a hand mixer until no lumps remain. Fold the pureed beets into the batter by hand with a rubber spatula until just combined.
BAKE THE CUPCAKES
Fill the lined muffin pans until each cup is three-fourths full of batter. Depending on the size of your cupcake pans, this recipe should make 2 to 2½ dozen cupcakes. Bake cupcakes for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Set aside to cool. Once cool enough to handle, transfer the cupcakes to a rack, line six compartments of one of the pans with paper liners, fill, and bake the remaining batter.
MAKE THE ICING
Combine the vegan margarine and vegan cream cheese and beat until thoroughly mixed and creamy. Add vanilla and beat until combined. Add the powdered sugar, 2 cups at a time, and incorporate into the creamed mixture. Once all the sugar has been added, scrape down the bowl and beat for 2 minutes at medium speed.
ICE THE CUPCAKES
Place the cooled cupcakes on a serving tray.
Using a spatula or a butter knife, spread 2 rounded tablespoons of icing onto the top of each cooled cupcake, swirling to cover the surface of the cupcake.
Place an icing tip inside a pastry bag. Fill the pastry bag half full of icing. Squeezing from the top of the bag, force the icing through the tip onto the top of the cupcakes, swirling the icing around the top of each cupcake.
Serve at room temperature, and refrigerate any leftovers. Vegan Red Velvet Cupcakes will keep for up to four days, refrigerated.
Vegan Baking - A vegan diet includes no animal products, such as meat, dairy, eggs, or even honey. Some people are vegan because of health concerns, while others adopt a vegan lifestyle out of a concern for animals. Still others are vegan due to the reduced environmental impact of a plant-based diet. Many resources exist for vegan baking, most notably the excellent book Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World, by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero.
Reprinted with permission from Cake Ladies: Celebrating a Southern Tradition © 2011 by Jodi Rhoden, Lark Crafts, an imprint of Sterling Publishing Co., Inc.
Guess what? As if it could get any better, one copy is up for grabs for one of you lucky JCD readers!!!!
To enter, all you have to do is leave me a comment under this post telling me what your very favorite cake is. This giveaway is only open to JCD followers, so if you haven't already clicked follow, make sure to do so now.
This giveaway opens immediately and ends at midnight on February 27, 2012. A winner will be randomly selected and has 48 hours to claim their prize or another winner will be drawn.
*Disclaimer - I was provided a cookbook for review, but all opinions remain my own. No money was compensated.