Monday, February 16, 2009

Chocolate Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Our recent trip to Nashville, TN and our cupcake taste test inspired me to try making my own, and what a better opportunity to do so than Valentine's Day. I treated myself to a "Cupcake Kit" from The Chocolate Moose mainly to get the cute cupcake wrappers and pastry bag. It also comes with a recipe book with recipes for basic vanilla and chocolate cupcakes, cream cheese and chocolate frosting plus a handful of fancier cupcakes infusing fruits and other flavors. Below is the basic recipe for chocolate cupcakes with cream cheese frosting. I added the heart-shaped York peppermint patties as (edible) decoration.
Chocolate Cupcakes
Makes 12 (I halved the recipe, to make 6)
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened Dutch process cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules dissolved in 2 teaspoons water
2/3 cup buttermilk (any fat content)
  • Sift the flower, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl.
  • In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixture on medium speed until smoothly blended, about 1 minute. Scrape sides of bowl as needed.
  • Add the eggs one at a time, beating until each is blended into the batter and it looks creamy, about 1 minute. Mix in the vanilla and dissolved coffee. On low speed, add half of the flour mixture, mixing just to incorporate it. Mix in the buttermilk to blend in. Mix in the remaining flour mixture until it is incorporated and the batter is smooth.
  • Spoon the batter into cupcake liners set in a muffin tin and bake for 25 minutes at 350 degrees.

Cream Cheese Frosting
Makes 3 cups, for 12 cupcakes
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
6 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups powdered sugar
  • In a large bowl, beat the butter, cream cheese, and vanilla with an electric mixer on low speed until smooth and thoroughly blended, about 1 minute. Scrape sides of bowl as needed.
  • Add the powdered sugar, mixing until smooth, about 1 minute, then beat on medium speed for 1 minute to lighten it further. 
  • Spread on cooled cupcakes.

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