Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Countdown to Christmas 2009

Each year it seems as if Christmas sneaks up on me and there is never enough time between Thanksgiving and the week of Christmas.

Last night me and my assistants put up our Christmas tree. In the middle of decorating my little diva smashed a few of my glass ornaments(no injuries) and she never said a peep. Wow, after supervising , unpacking boxes, and then putting the boxes back in storage I wished for a really nice cocktail. The real drama started when I assigned only one child to put on the candy canes, What was I thinking? Our finished product was far better than expected. I cannot put any wrapped presents under the tree until Christmas Eve night (or more like the wee hours of Christmas morning) or risk having each present opened before Christmas morning.

Tonight one of my assistants helped me whip up one of my favorite oatmeal raisin cookies. Recipe featured on my "Christmas Cookie"post. These are a special treat for my little diva's daycare center.

I wanted to bake a different holiday treat for the kids so I whipped up some Red Velvet Cupcakes. Some of these are being delivered to the daycare center tomorrow since there is no need for us to have 24 cupcakes in our house over the next few days. I still have my butter cookies, magic cookie bar and more oatmeal raisin cookies to bake. This is the first time I used a red velvet recipe for cupcakes. One thing about cupcakes is the fact they are very time consuming and in this case a little messy with the red food coloring. Oh, and did I mention the scrumptious cream cheese frosting. I sprinkled the cupcakes with a little red sugar. Recipe for cupcakes below.

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting


2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 tablespoons red food coloring
1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Cream Cheese Frosting:
1 pound cream cheese, softened
2 sticks butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
Chopped pecans and fresh raspberries or strawberries, for garnish

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 (12-cup) muffin pans with cupcake papers.
In a medium mixing bowl, sift 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 with a handheld electric mixer. Add the sifted dry ingredients to the wet and mix until smooth and thoroughly combined.

Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake tins about 2/3 filled. Bake in oven for about 20 to 22 minutes, turning the pans once, half way through. Test the cupcakes with a toothpick for doneness. Remove from oven and cool completely before frosting.
For the Cream Cheese Frosting:
In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla together until smooth. Add the sugar and on low speed, beat until incorporated. Increase the speed to high and mix until very light and fluffy.

Garnish with chopped pecans and a fresh raspberry or strawberry

Cook's Note: Frost the cupcakes with a butter knife or pipe it on with a big star tip.

No comments:

Related Posts with Thumbnails
Grow-up Plan