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I love watermelon; it's big, juicy, and bright red. Watermelon is just one of those fruits you eat and can only think of happy thoughts. So I has a lot of happy thoughts when I created this watermelon cupcake. Sunshine... Happy faces... Friends. I just love how pretty the cupcakes turned out. And they were delicious too.
Yes, I know watermelon and cupcake doesn't seem like a possible combination and I had my doubts too. But in the end, with one bite, I knew it was a winning combination.
Get your apron tied on because we are heading into the kitchen to bake up some yummy Watermelon Cupcakes using real watermelon.
Step 1: Ingredients
For the Cake:
1 seedless Watermelon
White Cupcake Mix (plus 2 egg whites and 1/3 cup oil)
Red Gel Food Dye
2/3 cups Mini Chocolate Chips
1-4 drops Watermelon Flavor Oil
For the Frosting:
5-6 tbsp of reduced watermelon juice (step shown how later)
1 cup Shortening or Butter
2 tsp Vanilla
2 cup Powder Sugar
Green Gel Food Dye
2-5 drops Watermelon Flavor Oil
Tip: I recommend the gel food dye because it has less liquid and a little goes a long way in coloring the cupcake.
Tip: Watermelon has a very mild flavor which is hard to translate into a cupcake. I know this because the first batch of cupcakes I made, I couldn't tell that there was any watermelon in it at all. So I kicked up the flavor by using the watermelon flavor oil. It is very strong so we are talking only drops. In the batter you could use less. In the frosting I used more so that it had more watermelon flavor.
Tip: In the frosting I used shortening but I'm a butter gal. I just hate to waste food and I have a tub of shortening that needs to be used. You can use margarine too if you want.
Step 2: Making the Reduced Watermelon Juice
1. Cut the watermelon into small pieces and throw into a blender.
Tip: The smaller the pieces, the easier your blender will be able to liquefy it. I actually found it easier to fill the blender only half way and to mush the watermelon down with a fork first.
2. Strain watermelon into a bowl.
3. Since I wanted to keep as much of the natural watermelon flavor as possible, I cooked at medium high heat the strained juice for about 5-7 minutes. This helps to reduce the water content down. Make sure to stir constantly and remove from heat right away. You should have/ need app 1 1/2 cup of this reduced watermelon juice.
Step 3: Making the Cupcake
1. Open cake mix and use the right amount of eggs and oil necessary to make the mix. Instead of water, substitute the watermelon juice. On my cake mix it will require 1 cup of the juice.
Tip: If you don't have food gel and will be using regular food color, note that you will not get as bright of a color and you will need to make sure to reduce the amount of juice you put in by a teaspoon to offset the liquid amount in the food color.
2. Add red gel dye.
Tip: I used a clean butter knife to snag just a tiny amount to put into the batter. I used a new butter knife every time as to not contaminate the dye.
2. Add the mini chocolate chips to the mix. This is the seeds. If you prefer seedless or less seeds, adjust as necessary.
3. Mix well and place batter into cupcake liners and bake according to the box.
Tip: I used all pink cupcake liners to ensure they are in the same color group.
Step 4: Making the Frosting
1. Use a mixer and cream shortening or butter until velvety smooth. I did this for 5-7 minutes.
2. Add vanilla, 4 tbsp. of the reduced watermelon juice, 1/2 cup of powder sugar, and 2-5 drops of watermelon flavor oil. Then continue to use the mixer.
3. Add the final 1/2 of powder sugar. Mix until frosting is the right consistency: holds on its own but not too thick.
Tip: You may need to mix more. Add more powder sugar , a tablespoon at a time if necessary, if too wet . If you too dry, add more juice.
4. Add one small amount of green gel dye. Mix well.
5. Take 1/4 of the frosting and set aside in another bowl. This lighter green will be the stripes on the watermelon.
Tip: If you want a light stripe, you can also try adding a bit of yellow for a greater contrast in color.
6. Add more green dye to the rest of the frosting. This will be a darker, richer green used as the bases for the frosting.
Step 5: Finishing the Watermelon Cupcakes
1. Spread the darker green frosting over each cupcake.
2. Add 3-5 lines of the lighter green frosting on top.
Tip: I used a small frosting tip in a corner cut-off of a zip loc bag to pipe out the lines. Then I used a butter knife to smear it down.
3. When you cut into the cupcake, it should look like a yummy watermelon slice. Enjoy!