Pistachio cupcakes with red velvet frosting, and rescuing overly thin frosting

I tried out two different recipes today. A basic pistachio cupcake and an intriguing red velvet frosting.

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The pistachio cupcake batter had an amazingly nutty aroma, and rose to beautifully flat tops at my magical formula of 150C in 18 minutes. I was unfortunately in a hurry (and hungry) when whipping up the frosting, and this was where it went wrong. I tend to cut down on the amount of icing sugar called for in frosting recipes because they are always too sweet for me, and today was no exception. However, I forgot to take into the account the food colouring involved, and I was a bit too heavy-handed with the milk.

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As a side note, food colouring does get darker as you leave it out to sit. This batch looked more like a dark pink but turned a vibrant red. Americolor is the best.

Long story short, the frosting turned out to be too runny. Now, the best remedy would be to beat in more icing sugar until you get the right consistency (I like my frosting quite stiff – you should be able to hold the bowl of frosting upside down over your head without it falling on you!). But rather stupidly, I decided to go ahead and use the frosting anyway. The first few swirls were painfully ugly, with lots of creases and no definition. Then I discovered the trick – pipe slowly, and use lighter pressure than you would with normal frosting.

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I had to scrape off the frosting off a few cupcakes and start again. But oh well, it worked out as good as the situation allowed the second time round! Afterwards, I put the cupcakes straight in the fridge to set the frosting, which definitely helped. Lesson learned, I certainly won’t be rushing my next batch of frosting.

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On a happier note, isn’t this cake stand from Ikea lovely? What a bargain at HK$200 on sale!

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2 thoughts on “Pistachio cupcakes with red velvet frosting, and rescuing overly thin frosting

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