Thursday, April 28, 2011

Chocolate Cupcakes

These cupcakes are like a little explosion of chocolatey goodness. The recipe has a lot of steps, which makes the cupcakes a little time consuming for one person to make, but all the steps are pretty simple. However, if you have an assistant or two (Geoff's daughter was kind enough to help me out), it goes a lot more quickly.

Chocolate Cupcakes with Strawberry Chocolate Ganache Filling and Frosted with Chocolate Glaze and Buttercream

Old-Fashioned Chocolate Cupcakes
~16 cupcakes/ 350F oven

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temp
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
2 eggs, room temp
3/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

1. Beat butter until softened. Add sugar and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
2 Add eggs, one at a time, and beat until well combined.
3. Measure the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder into a small sized bowl and whisk to combine.
4. Measure out the milk and vanilla and stir to combine
5. Add about a third of the dry ingredients to the butter/sugar and beat to combine. Add about a half of the milk/vanilla and beat to combine. Continue adding, alternating between dry and wet and finishing with the dry.
6. Scoop batter into cupcake cups about 2/3′s full. Bake cupcakes for about 22-25 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.

Strawberry Ganache Filling and Ganache Glaze

4.5 ounces bittersweet chocolate (the higher the percentage of cacao in your chocolate, the less sweet the ganache will be. I used 85% cacao, and the ganache was not at all sweet.)
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
pinch of salt
1/3 cup diced strawberries

1. Chop chocolate and transfer into a heat proof bowl.
2. Heat cream until bubbles form around the edge of the pan, pour cream over the chocolate.
3. Let sit for 1 minute then stir until combined.
4. Add vanilla and salt. Stir until combined.
5. Divide the ganache in two approximate equal portions. In the first portion, mix in the chopped strawberries. Transfer to the refrigerator to chill.
6. Leave the second portion on the counter to cool down. You want the filling to thicken up before the glaze. Once the filling is think, fill the cupcakes with it. Then glaze with the glaze. See assembly instructions below.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
I would normally use chocolate buttercream for these cupcakes, but I wanted to dye the frosting Easter-y colors.

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 tablespoon milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-3 cups powdered sugar

1. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter at medium speed until creamy.
2. Add the milk, vanilla extract, and 2 cups of powdered sugar and beat at low speed, occasionally stopping to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl, until light and fluffy. Add more powdered sugar to arrive at the consistency and sweetness you like - I use 3 cups, normally.

Chocolate Buttercream
Here's an alternate frosting recipe, in case you want to do an all-chocolate cupcake.

1/2 stick butter
1/4 cup cocoa
2-3 cups confectioner's sugar
~2 tablespoons milk

1. Beat butter on high for about 30 seconds until soft.
2. Add cocoa and 1 cup of confectioner's sugar and beat until incorporated.
3. Add 1 tablespoon of milk and the remainder of confectioner's sugar and beat until incorporated.
4. Add more milk if needed to reach the consistency you want.

1. Fill the cupcakes with the strawberry ganache using the cone method (see below for step-by-step instructions).
2. Spoon a tablespoon of glaze on each filled cupcake and smooth. If the glaze or the filling are too solid, you can microwave them for 15 seconds.
3. Top with frosting.

Cone Method

1. Use a paring knife to cut a cone out of the top of the cupcake.

2. Remove the cone and cut the tip off (hint: the cupcake pieces go great with ice cream). You can also scoop out a little bit of the cupcake's insides to make more room for filling.

3. Spoon a bit of filling into the cupcake.

4. Replace the cone.


Simba said...

What a yummy idea to put filling inside them. Your icing looks so professional.

Marlene said...

Sounds delicious! And I love the diagrams :D

~*Connie*~ said...

WANT!! could you send one over??

ABBY said...

Nom Nom NOM!
We fink yur Mom ought to open her own nom shop!

>^..^< >^..^< >^..^< >^..^< >^..^<
Abby Ping Jinx Boo Gracie

BeadedTail said...

Those look so good! Cupcakes are a major weakness of mine!

Sparkle said...

I think if my human were willing to go through all that trouble, she should cook a duck for me instead.

The Island Cats said...

Those look pretty nommy!

Rene said...

Those are beautiful, great job! And we're glad you had a helper (taste tester?)