Friday, May 4, 2018

Rosie Makes THE BEST CUPCAKES. Period.

Whenever I have an occasion that warrants cupcakes, these are my go-to cupcakes.  In fact, just making these cupcakes makes it a special occasion.  I found the recipe in Cook's Illustrated All-Time Best Recipes and they are truly the best cupcakes I've ever had.  They're the ultimate chocolate cupcakes with a triple dose of chocolate - chocolate cake, creamy, rich chocolate meringue frosting, and a decadent gooey truffle-like ganache filling.  This is chocolate nirvana.

The Best Chocolate Cupcakes

Ganache Filling
2 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 TB powdered sugar

Microwave chocolate, cream, and sugar about 30 seconds, or until melted.  Whisk until smooth, then refrigerate until just chilled, for no more than 30 minutes.

3 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine
1/3 cup (1 oz.) Dutch-processed cocoa
3/4 cup brewed coffee, hot 
3/4 cup (4 1/8 oz.) bread flour
3/4 cup (5 1/4 oz.) sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soad
6 TB vegetable oil
2 eggs
2 tsps white vinegar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Rosie note:   I go by weight, not measure, for these cupcakes.  Get a digital scale.

Heat oven to 350°.
Place liners in 12-cup muffin tin.
Place chocolate and cocoa in medium bowl and pour coffee over mixture.  Cover and let sit for 5 minutes.  Whisk mixture until smooth, then place in refrigerator to cool completely, about 20 minutes.

In a medium bowl, whisk flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda. 

Whisk oil, eggs, vinegar, and vanilla into cooled chocolate mixture until smooth.  Add flour mixture and whisk until smooth.

Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups.  Place 1 rounded teaspoon of filling on top of each muffin.  Bake until set, about 17 minutes.  Cool in muffin tins on wire rack, about 10 minutes, then lift out cupcakes and set on rack and let cool completely before frosting, about 1 hour.

Spread 2-3 TB frosting over each cooled cupcake, licking spatula whenever you can.

Chocolate Frosting
1/3 cup (2 1/3 oz) sugar
2 egg whites 
12 TB unsalted butter, cut into 12 pieces and softened
6 oz. bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled (to between 85 and 100°)
1 tsp vanilla extract

Combine sugar, egg whites, and salt in bowl of stand mixer and set over saucepan filled with 1 inch barely simmering water.  Whisking constantly, heat mixture until slightly thickened and foamy and it registers 150°, about 3-4 minutes.

Fit stand mixer with whisk and whip mixture on medium speed about 2 minutes, until slightly cooled and consistency of shaving cream.  Add butter, 1 piece at a time, whisking until smooth and creamy.  Whisk in melted, cooled chocolate and vanilla and mix until combined.  Increase speed to medium high and beat until light and fluffy, about 30 seconds, scraper down beater and sides of bowl as needed.

With offset spatula, swirl a few tablespoons of frosting on top of each cupcake.

Now, for the step-by-steps.
This is the filling:
Filling ready to nuke.
Nuke and melt the chocolate, whisk until smooth, and refrigerate to chill.

Now, the cupcakes:
Pour hot coffee over bittersweet chocolate and cocoa.
Let sit.

Stir until combined and smooth.

For the cupcakes:

Combine flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda.

Combine oil, vinegar, and vanilla.

On the left is mixture of flour, baking soda, and salt.
On the right are eggs, oil, vinegar, and vanilla.

Pour egg mixture into cooled, melted chocolate and coffee mixture.

Whisk until smooth.

Slowly add flour mixture and whisk until smooth.

Spoon batter into prepared muffin tins.

Place a spoonful of ganache filling on top of each cupcake.

And bake.

For the frosting:

Slowly whisk chocolate mixture into beaten egg whites and sugar mixture.
Beat until smooth.

And frost.

Slice in half to see the magic of ganache!

Then I had to go and add some vanilla ice cream and homemade chocolate sauce.

This is heaven.

Absolute heaven!

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