I’d like to make a toast.
My mom is pretty rockstar.
The kind of mom who will talk to you on the phone for over an hour, about nothing even! (But mostly about family gossip. She’ll never admit it. But that woman loves to gossip. I can’t imagine where I get it from…) And then say, “okay but call me later, alright?”
She feigns shock and appall when you tell her you’re staying at your boyfriend’s place on a Monday night….when she, in fact, is the one who let you and your high school boyfriend sleep on your living room floor together. Alone. The night after prom.
I admittedly occasionally wonder about her moral values. And whether or not her desire for grandchildren, like, yesterday, actually does transcend all reason.
She wakes up at ungodly hours to watch you run marathons and half marathons.
Doesn’t tell you to stop running even when you fracture your pelvis – not once, but twice in the course of two years because she knows it’s your oxygen.
And tells you you look like you lost weight every time you go home even when that is the farthest thing from the truth.
She drinks coffee at eleven pm and then falls asleep at the kitchen table mid-cup.
For the over five years now that her in-laws have lived across the street, she made sure they took their medication. Day and night. She learned how to give my grandfather his insulin shots. And works tirelessly to make sure that even with severe dementia, they stay safe.
Yes, she is an angel. A godsend.
And I couldn’t breathe without her.
So to her, I raise a cupcake.
She’s much more of a red wine drinker than I am (as in, her and my father finish off a bottle. Nightly.)
But since I can’t tell a bottle of chianti from a bottle of merlot, I thought I’d stick to what I know.
And if there’s one thing I’m fluent in. It’s buttercream.
This buttercream, in particular, is infused with a red wine reduction that makes it fruity, tart and oh so dreamy. Just the kind of thing my mother would love.
So here’s to you, mom.
Happy mother’s day!
Red Wine Buttercream Frosting
Makes enough to frost 24 cupcakes, adapted from Sprinkle Bakes
- 1 cup red wine (I used Bordeaux so it would be extra fruity) plus 2 tbsp, divided
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 sticks butter, softened (NOT room temp, should still be a bit cold)
- 3 cups confectioner’s sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- Place 1 cup red wine and granulated sugar in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir until the sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil and then simmer until the mixture has reduced to a scant 1/3 cup. Allow to cool completely. (I did this the night before and left the syrup in the fridge to chill.)
- In the bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, combine the butter and confectioner’s sugar. Mix on low speed at first, gradually increasing to high until powdered sugar gets incorporated (otherwise you’ll have a major white powdery mess. Everywhere.). Whisk until fluffy. With the mixer running, carefully pour in the cooled wine reduction. Add salt and beat well until combined, scraping down the bowl if necessary.
- With the mixer running, pour in the 2 tbsp of wine, one tbsp at a time, until thoroughly mixed. Transfer the frosting to a piping bag and frost cupcakes.