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Red Velvet Cupcakes

It was unusually hot this week for March and extremely hot when you live on the 20th floor facing West!  It was crazy.  Fortunately, I only had this one order during the heat wave.  The icing got soft really fast and the fondant flowers sweated immediately.

I made these for a co-worker's daughter's 16th birthday. Red velvet seems to be all the rage.  It's something I don't get at all.  I think of red velvet as a watered down chocolate cake with red dye.  However, lots of people love it!  It is paired with a cream cheese icing, which is the main attraction.  However, lots of other great flavours work with it cream cheese icing, like carrot and pumpkin...

All red velvet recipes are basically the same and I forgot that it needed oil.  Normally I substitute unsweetened apple sauce for the oil and it works great.  Normally, I make carrot cake and pumpkin when I'm substituting.  What I learned from this experiment with red velvet, it's not really a great alternative to oil.  For the carrot and pumpkin there's already fruit in the ingredients and they will mask the apple flavour.  For the red velvet you could definitely taste it.  So, lesson learned there.  Maybe one day I will learn the lesson of verifying that I have all the ingredients in advance instead of at 10pm when I start.

The good news is that all the 16th girls liked them.  I'm guessing the cream cheese icing helped a lot.  I added a lot of icing on each cupcake to compensate.

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