- 3/4 cup beet puree (directions follow)
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 1/2 teaspoons rice vinegar
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 stick butter (8 tablespoons), at room temperature
- 3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (not bleached flour)
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 1 tablespoon natural cocoa powder (not Dutch Process, or dark cocoa powder)
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line a standard muffin tin with paper cupcake liners. Empty the food processor of the beet puree (see below). Measure out 3/4 cup of beets and add it back to the food processor fitted with the steel blade attachment. Save any extra beet puree for another use. Add in vinegar and lemon juice (if you didn’t already add it when you were pureeing the beets), followed by the rest of the ingredients. Pulse the mixture a few times until the batter is smooth. Scoop mixture evenly into cupcake liners.
2. Bake for 18 minutes, or until the cupcakes in the center spring back up when touched. Remove cupcakes from the pan and place on a wire rack to cool completely. Frost with cream cheese frosting (I used a large pastry bag and a large star tip—Wilton 1M).
2 medium beets, or 1 large beet, scrubbed and rinsed
1. Preheat oven to 400ºF. Fill a small roasting dish with 1/2 inch of water. Place beets in the water, and cover with a piece of parchment paper and a large piece of aluminum foil. Roast for 60-90 minutes, or until the beets are very tender to the point of a knife.
2. When beets are cooled completely, peel, and cut into large chunks. Place in a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Process for 2 minutes, or until extremely smooth. If the beets need a little moisture to help them along, you can add the lemon juice and the vinegar from the recipe above, and then just don’t add it later.
cream cheese frosting
- 1 8 ounce package cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 cups confectioner’s (powdered) sugar
- 1-2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
Beat all ingredients together with an electric mixer until smooth and fluffy.