Saturday, January 10, 2009

SURPRISE RED VELVET CUPCAKES

24 Hershey's Kisses or Hugs

Batter:
1 1/2 sticks butter, softened
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
2 tbsp liquid red food coloring
2 tsp white vinegar
2 1/2 cups cake flour

Frosting:
2 (8 oz each) blocks of cream cheese, softened
1 stick butter, softened
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Garnish:
Colored sugar sprinkles to suit the occasion.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 24 muffin tin cups with pretty paper liners. Unwrap the candy and put one in the bottom of each lined muffin tin. Set aside.

To make the cakes:
In a large mixing bowl with mixer on a medium-high speed, beat butter, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt and vanilla for 2 minutes or until creamy. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, until blended. In a two cup measuring cup stir the buttermilk, food coloring, and vinegar until well blended. With mixer on low speed, beat in flour in thirds, alternating with the buttermilk mixture in two additions. Beat just until blended. Put a scant 1/4 cup of the batter over the candy in each muffin cup. Pour gently so the candy stays in the center. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center of the cakes comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes before removing from pan. Then remove the cakes from the pan and allow to finish cooling on the wire rack.

To make the frosting:
Beat the cream cheese and butter in a medium bowl with the mixer on medium speed until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Reduce the speed to low and add the powdered sugar and vanilla. Increase the speed to high and beat until smooth and fluffy. Frost cupcakes and sprinkle with candy sugars or other decorations to suit the occasion. Refrigerate until serving.


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