Pink is always such an under-credited color. How many people do you know who say that pink is their favorite color? There is a stigma around it being a girly color, so all the feminists in the world (so like very girl ever) don't like saying it's their favorite color. And honestly, it's not the most versatile color and can't be used year round or worn everyday, etc.
But you simply cannot deny that it is an incredibly pretty color.
For example, have you ever seen ombré style cakes, where each layer of cake gradually goes from a deep pink to a light pink/white? They are super pretty and always look almost too good to eat. That was my goal with these cupcakes, but I wanted to make each layer a different berry, not just dyed white cake. So I turned to Primrose Bakery's cupcake cookbook and found a strawberry cake recipe. So I divided the batter and made the bottom layer raspberry, the middle layer strawberry, and the top plain vanilla (I may have added so extra red and pink food coloring in there to make the colors more dramatic, because the raspberry batter was looking a little dull).
They didn't turn out very ombré, because I didn't mix berries into the white batter, it had a slightly thicker consistency and sunk through the pink layer. But the marbled effect is still pretty nice. I think to really get the ombré effect you just have to do layers of a cake and put frosting in between.
But really I don't think anyone's going to complain when you serve them these. And if they do, you should confiscate their cupcake because they do not get that privilege.
I love the sprinkles on these cupcakes. They are the perfect matching accent to make these cupcakes the utter epitome of all things, red, pink, and white and pretty and Valentine's-y and full of love. Don't they just make you want to sit down with your loved one(s) and dig in? I think it's all the pink. Pink can be a great color sometimes. I mean, it's the color of love right?
And love is all you need. I think the Beatles said that.
Ombre Berry Cupcakes
1 cup + 2 tbsp sugar
1 1/3 cups self-rising flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp cornstarch
2 sticks butter, at room temp
1/4 cup pureed strawberries
1/4 cup purees raspberries
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350.
Cream butter and sugar first, then add eggs one by one. Then add remaining ingredients except for berries and beat well. Divide batter into three part and mix the strawberries into one, raspberries into another, and the vanilla extract into the other.
Layer the different flavor batters into each cupcake liner (raspberry on bottom, strawberry, then plain) until about 2/3 full. Bake for about 25 minutes. Cupcakes will be fairly moist even when cooked.
Let cool before frosting with the frosting below and decorating with sprinkles!
White Chocolate Peppermint Cream Cheese Frosting
6 ounces white chocolate, coarsely chopped
4 ounces (half an 8-ounce package) reduced-fat cream cheese, at room temperature
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 to 2 1/2 cups confectioners sugar, sifted
Place the white chocolate in a small glass bowl in the microwave oven on high power for 1 minute. Remove the bowl from the oven and stir with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula until it is smooth. Set the chocolate aside to cool.
Place the cream cheese and butter in a large mixing bowl. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed until well combined, 30 seconds. Stop the machine. Add the melted white chocolate and blend on low speed until just combined, 30 seconds. Add the vanilla extract and 2 cups of the confectioners’ sugar and blend on low speed until the sugar is incorporated, 30 seconds more. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat until the frosting is fluffy, 1 minute more, adding up to 1/2 cup more sugar if needed to make a spreadable consistency.
Use to frost cupcakes