Let me just say that these cupcakes are spectacular. A flavorful, moist chocolate cake with a little ganache surprise inside, and topped with a dreamy, creamy, light chocolate Swiss buttercream. They take a bit of work, a lot of steps involved, but it’s worth it. The cupcakes themselves have no butter, which I found interesting. Just a bit of vegetable oil – which it turns out I completely forgot to add. So you can safely leave the oil out and they’ll still turn out fine (there’s still fat in them, from the addition of bittersweet chocolate and eggs).
Ultimate Chocolate Cupcakes
Makes 12 cupcakes
|2||ounces bittersweet chocolate , chopped fine (see note)|
|1/4||cup heavy cream|
|1||tablespoon confectioners’ sugar|
|3||ounces bittersweet chocolate , chopped fine (see note)|
|1/3||cup (1 ounce) Dutch-processed cocoa|
|3/4||cup hot coffee|
|3/4||cup (4 1/8 ounces) bread flour|
|3/4||cup (5 1/4 ounces) granulated sugar|
|1/2||teaspoon table salt|
|1/2||teaspoon baking soda|
|6||tablespoons vegetable oil|
|2||teaspoons white vinegar|
|1||teaspoon vanilla extract|
FOR GANACHE FILLING: Place -chocolate, cream, and confectionersÃ¢Â€Â™ sugar in medium -microwave-safe bowl. Heat in microwave on high power until mixture is warm to touch, 20 to 30 seconds. Whisk until smooth; transfer bowl to refrigerator and let stand until just chilled, no longer than 30 minutes.
FOR CUPCAKES: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Line -standard-size muffin pan (cups have Ã‚Â½-cup capacity) with baking-cup liners. Place chocolate and cocoa in medium bowl. Pour hot coffee over mixture and whisk until smooth. Set in refrigerator to cool completely, about 20 minutes. Whisk flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda together in medium bowl; set aside.
Whisk oil, eggs, vinegar, and vanilla into cooled chocolate-cocoa mixture until smooth. Add flour mixture and whisk until smooth.
Divide batter evenly among muffin pan cups. Place one slightly rounded teaspoon ganache filling on top of each cupcake. Bake until cupcakes are set and just firm to touch, 17 to 19 minutes. Cool cupcakes in muffin pan on wire rack until cool enough to handle, about 10 minutes. Carefully lift each cupcake from muffin pan and set on wire rack. Cool to room temperature before frosting, about 1 hour.
TO FROST: Mound 2 to 3 tablespoons frosting on center of each cupcake. Using small icing spatula or butter knife, spread frosting to edge of cupcake, leaving slight mound in center.
Creamy Chocolate Frosting
Makes about 2 1/4 cups
Cool the chocolate to between 85 and 100 degrees before adding it to the frosting. If the frosting seems too soft after adding the chocolate, chill it briefly in the refrigerator and then rewhip it until creamy. The frosting can be made up to 24 hours in advance and refrigerated in an airtight container. When ready to frost, place frosting in a microwave-safe container and warm briefly on high power until just slightly softened, 5 to 10 seconds. Once warmed, stir until creamy.
|1/3||cup (2 1/3 ounces) granulated sugar|
|2||large egg whites|
|Pinch table salt|
|12||tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter , softened and cut into 1-tablespoon pieces|
|6||ounces bittersweet chocolate , melted and cooled (see note)|
|1/2||teaspoon vanilla extract|
- Combine sugar, egg whites, and salt in bowl of stand mixer; place bowl over pan of simmering water. Whisking gently but constantly, heat mixture until slightly thickened, foamy, and registers 150 degrees on instant-read thermometer, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Place bowl in stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment. Beat mixture on medium speed until consistency of shaving cream and slightly cooled, 1 to 2 minutes. Add butter, 1 piece at a time, until smooth and creamy. (Frosting may look curdled after half of butter has been added; it will smooth with additional butter.) Once all butter is added, add cooled melted chocolate and vanilla; mix until combined. Increase speed to medium-high and beat until light, fluffy, and thoroughly combined, about 30 seconds, scraping beater and sides of bowl with rubber spatula as necessary.
- Ultimate Chocolate Cupcakes with Ganache Filling (Cook’s Illustrated, May/June 2010)
- Creamy Chocolate Frosting (Cook’s Illustrated, May/June 2010)