Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Cupcakes Win

I cooked a decent dinner for some friends the other night: macaroni and cheese carbonara with fontina, pancetta and peas, along with Mom's meatloaf. My lovely husband played bartender and made us all some delicious tequila sunrises with tequila we'd bought in Mexico. And I made homemade vanilla ice cream for dessert, using a vanilla bean I brought back from Martinique. But none of these things made me as happy as the Mini Chocolate Cupcakes with Seven-Minute Icing I made for dessert.

These cupcakes were divine, truly. Moist, light and just chocolatey enough. They kind of reminded me of Hostess cupcakes, the ones with that little dab of frosting in the middle and curlicue designs on top, because they weren't that sock-you-in-the-stomach rich chocolate flavor. Instead, they were like tiny chocolate pillows. The recipe calls for cake flour and all-purpose flour, but since only required a half-cup of each, I just used a full cup of all-purpose and sifted it. The batter also consists of unsweetened cocoa powder, dark brown sugar, granulated sugar, buttermilk and brewed coffee. Pretty heavenly stuff, wouldn't you say?

With marshmallow-ish Seven-Minute Icing on top, plus a smattering of rainbow sprinkles, these cupcakes were my favorite food of the evening. No offense to everything else (even those delectable cocktails), but these were just perfect.--S

Chocolate Cupcakes

Makes 6 large cupcakes, 24 mini cupcakes

1/2 c cake flour
1/2 c all-purpose flour [or use 1 c all-purpose flour and skip the cake flour]
1/3 c unsweetened cocoa powder, preferably Dutch processed
1 1/2 t baking soda
1/4 t kosher salt
1 large egg
1/2 c firmly packed dark brown sugar
1/2 c granulated sugar
1/2 c buttermilk
1/2 c brewed coffee
1/3 c canola oil

1. Preheat the oven to 350. Grease the insides of muffin cups.
2. Sift the cake and all-purpose flours, cocoa powder, and baking soda together onto a piece of parchment paper or into a bowl. Stir in the salt.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together the egg and the brown and granulated sugars.
4. In a small bowl, mix together the buttermilk, coffee and canola oil.
5. In 3 additions, alternately stir the wet and dry ingredients into the eggs. Divide the batter among the muffin cups.
6. Bake until a skewer inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Carefully remove the cupcakes from the cups by running a knife around the inside edge of the cup.

Recipe courtesy of A Passion for Ice Cream

Seven-Minute Icing

Makes about 3 cups

3 large egg whites
1 1/2 c sugar
1/3 c cold water
1 T light corn syrup
1/4 t cream of tartar
1 t vanilla

1. Combine all ingredients except vanilla in the top of a large double boiler or a heatproof bowl and beat until thoroughly blended.
2. Set over rapidly boiling water. Beat constantly with a hand-held mixer at medium-high speed, or with a wire whisk, until the mixture stands in stiff peaks, 7 minutes. Remove from the heat.
3. Add vanilla and continue beating until the icing is cooled to room temperature. Use at once.

Recipe courtesy of Joy of Cooking

1 comment:

Kate said...

they were amaaaaa---aaazing.