Red Velvet Cupcakes

(courtesy of Deborah Nelson, owner, The Courtyard Café and Bakery in Fallon. Makes about 30 cupcakes)

2½ cups all-purpose flour

½ cup cocoa powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

1 cup butter, softened

2 cups sugar

4 eggs

1 cup sour cream

⅔ cup milk

1 ounce (1 small bottle) red food coloring (natural choices are available)

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Cream cheese frosting

In mixing bowl, mix together flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

In large bowl, beat together butter and sugar with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes). Beat in eggs one at a time, then add sour cream, milk, red food coloring, and vanilla.

Gradually add flour, cocoa, and baking soda mixture on low speed just until blended. 

Spoon into muffin pans lined with cupcake liners, filling ⅔ of each cup. Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 to 25 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes and remove from pans.

For cream cheese frosting

16 ounces cream cheese, softened

2 sticks butter, softened

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

¼ teaspoon salt

2 pounds powdered sugar

Whip ingredients together on medium speed, thinning with heavy cream until light and fluffy. Frost cupcakes. Crumble cake crumbs on top for extra color and decoration. Enjoy. 

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