Wednesday, March 16, 2011
Rainbow Cupcakes for St.Patrick's Day
When you have children, everything colorful and vibrant catches your eyes. It could be the grocery store, department store, out in nature, everywhere. And if you have young ones going to school, they will definitely regale about every colorful experience they have in school! Well, at least until they are teenagers, I hope. Therefore, it must have either been the bakery which first made me curious about the colorful cupcakes, or my daughter’s animated description of some fantastic cupcake her friend shared with her. Whichever way, my interest was piqued and I participated in St Patrick ’s Day in my own way.
Historically, this is a festival in honor of the patron Saint of Ireland and celebrated on March 17th. The festivities started with the Catholics in Ireland, but have now taken a secular swing, spreading far and wide. I can confirm this is secular and gone beyond the boundaries of Ireland because even a mother from a small town in Kerala now fully participates by baking rainbow cupcakes on this special day.
For some people, St Patrick’s day is about coloring lakes green, wearing green attires or getting pinched for not wearing green, drinking a lot of green drinks, and even spotting funky hats. Others may call this an eyesore and decide not to participate. But as for me, it is another reason to celebrate in the middle of March! The beautiful color green signifies the arrival of spring. You know I will take spring for anything. In short, ‘have a great time’ is written all over this festival and I have decided not to shy away.
Baking fancy cupcakes is one of the ways I celebrate. For this one, the process was painstaking, with half a tablespoon different color batter being poured alternatively into each cupcake mold. But when baked, and my little boy exclaimed ‘rainbow’ with his hands clutching his wide-open-mouth it was priceless. Color your day green!
I have to tell you this - the first time I got excited about rainbow cupcakes is when Sangeetha shared it on her blog Kothiyavunu. Thank you Sangee for inspiring.
Flour: 1 cup
Baking powder- 1 to 1 1/2 tsp
Vegetable oil- 1/2 cup
Sugar- 1/2 cup (plus 2 Tbsp if you are not using a frosting)
Pure Vanilla Extract- 1 1/2 tsp
Milk/Buttermilk- 1/2 cup
To Make more Colors:
Violet - 9 red + 6 blue drops
Orange - 12 yellow + 4 red drops.
1.Line a muffin pan to make 10 cupcakes. Beat together sugar and oil, follow up by add eggs one at a time.
2.Now mix in the vanilla extract.
3.Whisk together flour and baking powder in a separate bowl.
4.Gradually add flour into the wet mixture alternating with milk or buttermilk to make the batter.
5. Take 6 bowls and pour equal quantity of the batter into each of them. (It will be about 1/3 cup in each bowl) Preheat oven at 350 degree F.
6. Color the batter in each bowl with the food colors mentioned above. Stir well without any streaks making a uniform color. It will take about 10-12 drops of color. I know it's a lot of color but you will need to make vibrant cupcakes.
7. Now is the time consuming part. Carefully pour about 1/2 Tbsp of each color into all the prepared cups.(Be accurate, if you add more than 1/2 Tbsp, you will run out of batter !)
11.Starting with either blue or red finish all the rainbow colors. Each time make sure that you cover the bottom layer color with the one you are pouring on top. Do not spread the batter. Keep pouring each spoon of batter in the center every time and batter will spread itself.
12.Bake for about 15 minutes or until the tester comes out clean.
16.Cool on a wire rack and then the cakes are ready for frosting.
1.This recipe yields the most moist and delicious Vanilla cupcakes I've ever tasted!
2.Using the same recipe you may choose to use just 4 or 5 colors. This will make each colored portion broader.
3.You don't have to worry about taking time to pour in each color, the cupcakes will come out perfect.
4.If you add only 1/2 cup sugar, the cake is not too sweet. This will give you enough incentive to frost without feeling guilty. I used whipped cream to frost some of the cup cakes.
Adapted from: Baking bites and Kothiyavunu