Saturday, October 16, 2010

10/18 : National Chocolate Cupcake Day!

I must admit, I am more of a vanilla person when it comes to cupcakes and cakes. I thought it would be easy to pick a simple chocolate cupcake recipe since they aren’t too appetizing to me…you know something sweet and simple, average chocolate cake, topped with an average chocolate frosting…
Ho humwas I wrong. I couldn’t decide between all the chocolate cupcake recipes and methods of making them I came upon.

I really thought I should challenge my baking capabilities, since it is afterall..National Chocolate Cupcake day!
However being that I am an amateur baker, and to avoid any whining and crying (over a cupcake) I decided to keep it somewhat basic.
I really wanted to attempt the Hi Hat chocolate cupcakes, as seen on Bakerella ; but the icing instructions got the best of me. 

As I said above I could not decide what method of chocolate madness to choose…so I baked two kinds of chocolate cupcakes. Not much more I can say then..Yum!
Chocolate cupcakes, two ways:

Hostess Cupcake and Chocolate Buttercream Cupcake (both with marshmallow filling!)

Marshmallow cream filling:
1 - 7 oz container marshmallow cream
1/2 cup softened butter
1/3 cup powder sugar
1 tablespoon water
1/4 teaspoon salt
* Attach a large tip to pastry bag and fill with cream. Insert tip into cupcake and fill until cupcake slightly expands.

Chocolate cupcake batter:
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
¾ cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 1/2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup sour cream

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees with rack in center. Prepare the batter: Place chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl, and set it over a medium saucepan of barely simmering water or microwave (30 sec. intervals); stir chocolate until melted and smooth. Remove bowl from heat, and set aside to cool slightly.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa powder and salt in a medium bowl; set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment,(or hand-held mixer) cream butter and sugar on medium speed, scraping sides of bowl as needed, until light and fluffy. On low speed, mix in melted chocolate. Increase speed to medium, and add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add vanilla, and beat until mixture is creamy and color has lightened slightly, about 1 minute. Mix in sour cream. On low speed, add half of reserved flour mixture, beating until just incorporated. Mix in 1 cup water. Add remaining flour mixture, and mix until just incorporated.
  4. Line a cupcake pan with paper liners. Fill each liner with enough batter, about 1/3 cup. Bake, rotating pans halfway through, until tops are firm and a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Transfer cupcakes to a wire rack to cool in pan for 10 minutes.
Ganache: for hostess cupcake1/2 cup heavy cream
4 oz semi-sweet chocolate

Heat heavy cream until simmering in a small saucepan (you can also microwave but do it in 30 second intervals and watch it closely). Cut chocolate into chunks and put in a small bowl. Pour cream over chocolate and let sit for one minute. Stir until chocolate is melted. Let stand about 5 minutes and then dip each filled cupcake quickly into the chocolate, tap lightly to get rid of the excess and turn over.  Let cool on a wire rack until chocolate is set.  Pipe on swirls or decoration as desired.

Chocolate Buttercream:
2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
12 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted and cooled
3 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
4-5 cups confectioners' sugar

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or hand-held mixer), beat butter until smooth and creamy, 2 to 3 minutes. With mixer on low speed, add chocolate until just combined. Add milk, vanilla, and sugar; mix on medium until well combined, being careful not to overmix.

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