Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Schooooooooool's Out for Summer!

Cue: Alice Cooper. We played that song in marching band in high school; it was awesome. Did I ever mention I was in marching band? I played the flute. It's where I met my Business Man, at band camp. When I was just a wee little one, 14 years old. Crazy to think about!

Anyways, school is officially out for summer! Yesterday was our last day with students, and today was a teacher "work day." Aka clean up the crazy mess your room has become over the past 9 months and turn in your lesson plans that were due several weeks ago. 

What better way to kick off the summer than with a pool party? One of the teachers invited the entire staff over to her home for a potluck lunch and to swim in her pool. And considering that temps today were in the mid-90s, it was the perfect day to be pool-side.

I decided to make cupcakes to take to the pool party. (Surprise, surprise.) But not just any cupcakes. Red Velvet Cheesecake Cupcakes.

It's kind of a long story how these cupcakes came into existence. Back in our hometown, every June there is a Cherry Festival, with carnival rides, games, tents of goodies, entertainment, a family bike ride, a 5km race, and in the recent years, a Cherry Cookery Contest. My mom has run the contest (along with Lori's Kitchen Store) for the last few years, and last weekend was the contest. My mom was raving to me about one of the winning recipes, a cherry-almond cupcake with a cheesecake filling. But not a typical cheesecake filling, actual chunks of cheesecake. I decided that I had to make some variation of these cupcakes for our pool party. I wasn't too sure how popular cherry-almond would be, so I decided to do a variation on red velvet. Because everybody loves red velvet!

Fluffy red velvet cupcakes scattered with mini-chips and stuffed with a real cheesecake center. All frosted with vanilla cream cheese frosting.

First, you start out with a baked cheesecake. You can be all fancy and bake one yourself, or rely on your good friend, Sara Lee.

Slice it into chunks. (You need at least 30. But, if you have more, you can always snack. Like the pre-dessert appetizer.) I didn't include the crust in my chunks, but you could and it shouldn't be a problem, just some graham cracker infused into the cupcake. 

Place the chunks on a baking sheet and freeze them until they're solid. They need to be frozen when you bake the cupcakes so that the cheesecake part doesn't get over-baked.

While the cheesecake chunks are freezing, whip up the batter. Try not to spill red food coloring all over the place. Because it will dye your fingers red. Not that I would know.

[Side note: When I was in seventh grade, my BFF Kristin and I thought we would be cool and videotape our own cooking show, called "Two Peas and a Pod." We actually taped various shows/movies; our specialty was horror movies. I laugh just thinking about it. 

Anyways, on this particular episode of "Two Peas and a Pod", we were making red velvet cake from a red velvet cake mix. We were really gourmet. I snuck a spoonful of just the regular cake mix (before it was mixed up), and Kristin about had a freak-out. I guess it turned my mouth bright red, and it looked like it was bloody! I ran to the bathroom to check the mirror and then we both couldn't stop laughing. It made for a really good cooking show. Man, those were the days.]

Once the batter is ready and the cheesecake is frozen, fill the cupcake tins about halfway with batter. Then, you place a cheesecake chunk in the cupcake tin.

Then, top with a bit more batter, just enough to cover the cheesecake.

After baking about 20 minutes, let them cool and then frost!

See inside? Creamy cheesecake. Delicious. I frosted mine with vanilla cream cheese frosting and stored them in the fridge. Even tastier when they're cold.

And there ya have it! Red Velvet Cheesecake Cupcakes. Now I'm off to celebrate the start of summer... with another cupcake. And a side of Diet Dew. Yum.


SbMac said...

OMG I have to try these...when I say I should I mean take the recipe to my boyfriends mom and have her help me!

Alissa said...

these.look.amazing. I counted, I have 6 more Mondays then I will be cuing up some Alice Cooper :)

Sara said...

Alissa- Whenever I see you again (whenever that may be), I may just come armed with cupcakes...

I'm Kristin, a self-proclaimed lifelong learner said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kristin said...

These look amazing. I think of that cooking show we did every single time I have red velvet anything...I'm actually really excited because we are doing a cooking week at the Girl Scout camp I'm at this summer. I get to video tape all of my girls doing their own cooking shows! I've gotta pass on the tradition to someone!

Sara said...

Kristin-- That sounds like so much fun! They will loooove it!

Jessica @ rerunrunning said...

Oh man these look incredible!!! I've been browsing through your recipes and you are so good! You should put together a cook book!!

Sara said...

@Jessica - thanks so much! that is one of the best compliments. These are definitely in my top 3 favorite cupcakes, along with my key lime pie & cappuccino chip. Yummmmmm.

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