With their velvety, earthy taste and ruby-hued juice, beets are a perfect option to make a natural red velvet cake. Garden intern Kay adapted this recipe from Martha Stewart.
4 medium beets
2 cups all-purpose flour
1½ cups sugar
½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1½ teaspoons baking soda
¾ teaspoon sea salt
2 large eggs
¾ cup warm water
¼ cup oil – safflower, olive, vegetable
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Trim, peel and cut the beets into 2-inch chunks. Cover beets with 2 inches of water in pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes, until tender and easily pierced with a fork. Drain beets and puree in a food processor or finely grate. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Whisk together flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda and sea salt in mixing bowl. Whisk eggs, water, oil, vanilla and beet puree into dry ingredients. Distribute into lined muffin tin and bake 15-20 minutes. Remove cupcakes from oven and flip them out onto a rack to cool. When cakes are completely cooled, ice them with Kay’s Creamy Cake Frosting, powdered sugar, or topping of choice.
Kay’s Creamy Cake Frosting
This simple, versatile icing tastes great on nearly anything – we recommend it with Chocolate Beetcake, Carrot Cake and Zucchini Bread – and that’s just to start!
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 tbsp butter, softened
6 tbsp powdered sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Combine all ingredients until smooth and creamy.
For pink frosting, add cooked, grated beets. The more beet you add, the pinker the frosting will be!
For spiced frosting, add ground cinnamon & nutmeg to taste. This variation is particularly tasty on zucchini bread and banana cake.