Some of our good friends play in an 80's cover band called Hott Thing. They describe their music as "80's rock decadence". I was commissioned to make some rocking cupcakes for their band members birthday. At first I was a bit stumped as to how I was going to make cupcakes that would fit the occasion, but then I came up the the idea of doing a cupcake with pieces of red hots candy in them. Red Hots for Hott Thing- Perfect!! There weren't many recipes online, a few involved adding red pepper and cinnamon to cupcakes, but I wanted that lovely sugary sweet but spicy flavor from Red Hots candy. Also I wasn't digging the effort it would take to melt down the candies into a syrup. What I decided to do was just to put Red Hots into the cupcake batter, and hope for the best. I used a basic vanilla cake recipe, smashed up Red Hots and threw them into the batter. The candy melted and made lovely little bursts of cinnamon spiciness when you took a bite.
adapted from recipe by Amy Sedaris
Makes 24 cupcakes
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 1/2 cups flour
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons sour cream
1 cup red hots candy, crushed
In a large bowl cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time, mixing after each addition. Add vanilla, salt, and baking powder.
Add flour in three batches, alternating with the milk & sour cream. Mix until batter is smooth with no lumps, but do not over beat. Fold in crushed red hots.
The best way that I found to crush the red hots was to put them in a plastic bag and to smash them with a rolling pin. You have to use a thick plastic bag (like a freezer one) so the bag doesn't bust apart. The candy still ends up ripping though a little bit but its manageable. I tried putting them in a mini food processor that I have but that smashed them too much and they ended up a powder.
You should be able to find them at any grocery store. I used one box and had enough candy for the cupcakes and extra to decorate the frosting with.
OH and in case you were wondering...
This is Hott Thing!
***EXCITING NEWS*** I am now taking orders for cupcakes!! If you live in the San Diego area and would like me to bake cupcakes for your next event please check out my Cupcake Portfolio !!