Dear Heloise: Just wanted to let you know that I loved the red velvet cake recipe that was in your column. I have a 2-year-old grandson, Nicholas, and thought it would be a great idea to make red velvet cupcakes and send them to his day care for Christmas. I thought I had gotten all the ingredients. But when I started making the batter, I realized I only had one 1-ounce box of red food coloring. My daughter (Nicholas' mother) had small containers of red, blue, yellow and green. Since they were for Christmas, I decided to split the batter and make half red and half green. After icing the cupcakes, I added Christmas sprinkles. They made a real hit with the kids and day-care workers. They thought I had bought them at a bakery. Carolyn Seibert, Orange, Texas
It doesn't matter the color -- they taste yummy and look festive! One reader made orange velvet cupcakes for a special sporting event, so put on your thinking cap -- St. Patrick's Day is around the corner, and I'm thinking green! This delicious recipe, as well as many of my other favorite cake recipes, can be found in Heloise's Cake Recipes. You will get the recipes for Chocolate Sauerkraut "Surprise," War Cake and all the Red Velvet Cake versions. To receive a copy of the four-page pamphlet, please send $3 and a long, self-addressed, stamped (60 cents) envelope to: Heloise/Cake, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5001. Hint: Use a toothpick to test if a cake is done. Simply insert it into the cake, and if it comes out clean, the cake is done. An angel food cake or other deep cake can be tested using a piece of uncooked spaghetti. It's long enough to go all the way to the bottom of the pan. Heloise
Dear Heloise: My kids are all grown, but I still have a husband at home who loves sugar cookies. I don't use cookie cutters anymore. I mix up the batter, put it on a floured sheet of waxed paper and roll it into a long sausage roll. I wrap it in waxed paper and put this into the refrigerator for a couple of hours, remove the waxed paper, cut with a cheese slicer and pop onto cookie sheets. Fast, easy and less cleanup. Rosalie Willard, Houston
Dear Heloise: I just made deviled eggs for the first time in ages last week. When I looked at the mayonnaise and mustard jars in the fridge, I thought, why bother to measure those out? I just grabbed the squeeze-bottle honey Dijon mustard dressing instead. I didn't measure -- just squeezed out what looked right for the amount of eggs. Simple and delicious, and I don't even care much for that flavor of dressing! All I added was a touch of salt and pepper.
I didn't think it was such a hot idea until I read your column asking what readers put in their deviled eggs and thought, why not? L.T. Morini, Winston-Salem, N.C.
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