Category Archives: Chocolate

Nutella Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Hazelnut Crunch Icing

I decided to make these for my daughter’s birthday since she loves the combination of Nutella and peanut butter. I adultisized (yes, I made up that word) them a bit by adding a splash of Frangelico to the cupcake batter in place of a bit of the milk that the original recipe called for. Below the icing is a layer of crushed Ferrero Rocher chocolate hazelnut candy and I also mixed this in the icing, so you have a crunchy texture surprise when you take a bite.

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Nutella Cupcakes

  • 1 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 Tbsp dark chocolate cocoa powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 stick + 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk – If using Frangelico, decrease amount of milk by 2 tablespoons and replace with Frangelico
  • 2 Tpsp Frangelico (optional)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cup Nutella or other chocolate hazelnut spread

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

  1.  In a small bowl combine the flour, salt, baking powder and cocoa powder.
  2. In a large bowl, using an electric hand mixer or stand mixer, cream the sugar and butter. Mix until light and fluffy.
  3. Add the Nutella and mix until well combined.
  4. Mix in one egg at a time until combined.
  5. In a measuring cup mix the milk, vanilla, and the Frangelico; if you are using it. Remember to decrease the milk by 2 tablespoons and replacing that with 2 tablespoons of the Frangelico.
  6. To the large bowl, with the mixer on low, add in half the dry flour mix, combine. Add half the milk mix, combine. Add the remainder of the dry mix and finally the remainder of the milk. Mix well until the batter is smooth and creamy and a light chocolate color.
  7. Place liners in cupcake pan and fill 3/4 full with batter.
  8. Bake in oven for about 15 minutes. Check for doneness with a toothpick. This should come out with a tiny bit of cupcake on it for a moist cake.
  9. Remove to rack to cool.
Hazelnut Crunch Topping
  • 12 Ferrero Rocher Chocolate Hazelnut Candies, unwrapped
  1. Place all of the hazelnut candies into a food processor and process on pulse about five times. 
  2. Place in a bowl and set aside.
  3. When cupcakes are cool, smear the top of the cupcake with some of the crushed hazelnut candy. You’ll have some left to mix in the icing.
P1100729 P1100730In a small bowl combine the flour, salt, baking powder and cocoa powder.
P1100732In a large bowl, using an electric hand mixer or stand mixer, cream the sugar and butter. Mix until light and fluffy.
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Add the Nutella and mix until well combined.
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Mix in one egg at a time until combined.
P1100733In a measuring cup mix the milk, vanilla, and the Frangelico; if you are using it. Remember to decrease the milk by 2 tablespoons and replacing that with 2 tablespoons of the Frangelico.
P1100739To the large bowl, with the mixer on low, add in half the dry flour mix, combine. Add half the milk mix, combine. Add the remainder of the dry mix and finally the remainder of the milk. Mix well until the batter is smooth and creamy and a light chocolate color.
P1100731 P1100742 P1100745Place liners in cupcake pan and fill 3/4 full with batter.
Bake in oven for about 15 minutes. Check for doneness with a toothpick. This should come out with a tiny bit of cupcake on it for a moist cake.
Remove to rack to cool.
P1100747 P1100748Place all of the hazelnut candies into a food processor and process on pulse about five times.
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Place in a bowl and set aside.
P1100752When cupcakes are cool, smear the top of the cupcake with some of the crushed hazelnut candy. You’ll have some left to mix in the icing.

Peanut Butter Buttercream Icing

  • 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 cups confectioners sugar
  • 4 Tbsp milk
  1.  In a large bowl, using stand or an electric hand mixer, cream the butter and peanut butter until well combined.
  2. Slowly add confectioners sugar until well combined.
  3. Add the milk until well combined. The frosting should be creamy, smooth and light in color.
  4. Using a spatula, gently stir in the remaining crushed, hazelnut candy.
  5. Using a pastry bag and decorating tip (I used a closed star tip) make a circle of icing around the edge of cake.
  6. Next, using another pastry bag with a round tip, fill with additional Nutella and put a dollop in the center of the icing.
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Salted Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with Fluffy Peanut Butter Icing

These are so light and fluffy, you won’t feel like you’ve consumed an awful amount of calories. No guilt! How great is that? And, they are really easy to make. The cupcakes do not even require a mixer.

Chocolate and peanut butter. You can’t go wrong with that. Add a little salted dark chocolate and it takes it to another level. The sour cream in the batter makes the cake moist and light. The peanut butter icing is like a fluffy cloud.

I started off wanting to make a mousse icing, but I didn’t have any heavy cream and as much as I tried, Half & Half would not whip into anything, so I ditched that idea and added the cream afterwards. It still came out amazingly fluffy.

Salted Dark Chocolate Cupcakes:

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
  • 2 ounces salted, dark chocolate, chopped ( I used Lindt with Sea Salt)
  • ½ cup Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa powder
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup sour cream

Pre-heat oven to 350°. Position rack in upper-most part of oven.

Line a muffin pan with 12 cupcake liners.

Chop 2 ounces of bittersweet chocolate.

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Place butter, chocolate, and cocoa in a heatproof bowl. Set bowl over saucepan with two inches of simmering water.  Gently stir butter and chocolate until melted and combined. Set aside until mixture is warm to touch.

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Whisk flour, baking soda, and baking powder in small bowl to combine.

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Whisk eggs in another bowl to combine; add sugar, vanilla, and salt until fully incorporated.

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Add cooled chocolate mixture and whisk until combined. Sift one-third of flour mixture over chocolate mixture and whisk until combined; whisk in sour cream until combined, then sift remaining flour mixture over and whisk until batter is well-combined and thick.

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Fill cupcake line 2/3 full. Bake until skewer inserted into center of cupcakes comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes.
Cool cupcakes to room temperature before icing, about 30 minutes.

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Fluffy Peanut Butter Icing

  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened 
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons of cream or half & half

In a large mixing bowl, combine butter and peanut butter and beat with electric mixer, until creamy.

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Add two cups of confectioner’s sugar, vanilla and cream to mixer bowl, starting on low, and mix. Once it is partially combined, increase speed to medium-high and mix until well combined.

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Place icing into a piping bag, fitted with your tip of choice. I used a closed-star tip and also a large, round tip for these, and pipe icing onto your cooled cupcakes.

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Banana Frangelico Cupcakes with Nutella Banana Liqueur Icing

It’s been  a while, and my lovely collection of cupcake liners were crying out in loneliness. So, with that said, I decided to finish off the jar of Nutella, sorry kids, and bake today.

This is a banana cupcake to which I added a few tablespoons of Frangelico. For those of you who do not know, Frangelico is an Italian liqueur made from Hazelnuts. It is quite delicious. Now, of course, you can omit this.  This also holds true for the icing. You can, by all means, omit the banana liqueur in that, but I would replace it with milk or cream.  I just happen to like it and the little kick it gives.

This recipe makes about 18 cupcakes.

Banana Frangelico Cupcakes

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups of sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup, mashed, ripe bananas
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3 to 4 Tbsp. of Frangelico Liqueur

Line a muffin pan with cupcake liners.

Preheat oven to 350°.Mash the bananas.

Aren’t these cute?

In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add the eggs, vanilla, bananas and buttermilk. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; add to banana mixture. Mix in Frangelico.

I use this dry buttermilk. It’s great. I always have it on hand.

Fill 18 paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Once again, I used the handy ice-cream scooper.

Put into the oven and cook for about 22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

No peeking! ( I peeked)

When done, remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.

See? I used all the Nutella.

Nutella Banana Liqueur Icing

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup Nutella
  • 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 pounds confectioners’ sugar, sifted (one bag)
  • 4 Tbsp. milk, Half and Half or heavy cream
  • pinch of kosher salt
  • 2 Tbsp. banana liqueur

In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and Nutella until well combined. Slowly add in confectioner’s sugar, and continue creaming until well blended.

Add salt, vanilla, and 4 tablespoons of heavy cream or milk. Blend until creamy and moist.

Add about 3 Tbsp. of banana liqueur. If you omit this, use the same amount of cream or milk instead.

Fill a piping bag with frosting and decorate cupcakes, as desired. I used chopped hazelnuts and a banana chip for a garnish.

Dog approved…

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Sugar Cookie Cupcakes with Buttercream Frosting

Friday was my daughter’s 13th birthday. I like to refer to this year as “Juliet the 13th.” Yes, just like the horror movie. 😉 In honor of her, I decided to make these cupcakes and frost them with vanilla and chocolate buttercream and decorate them with blue topaz sanding sugar to represent her December birthstone.

As I was piping on the icing, I noticed it resembled a rose, which is wonderful, since it’s her middle name. So, these are pretty much perfect for my girl.

This recipe is wonderful. It’s basically a sugar cookie batter with some added milk to get the consistency of a cupcake batter. And it really does taste like a sugar cookie. Normally I change things up a little, but this one, I went directly by the recipe that I found here: http://www.tastebook.com/recipes/2114641-Sugar-Cookie-Cupcakes.

Makes about 2 dozen cupcakes.

  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) softened unsalted butter
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 cups flour
  • 3 tsp  (1 Tbsp) baking powder
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350°.

Line a muffin pan with 24 liners. This should make 24, unless, like me, you eat one’s worth of the batter raw.

I love these brown liners! So pretty and they retain their color when baked.

In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until creamy smooth.

Add in the eggs, one at a time, until well blended. Add in vanilla. Mix on low speed.

Combine flour and baking powder, add to the creamed mixture and mix well.

Finally, add the milk and mix until smooth. Spoon into paper-lined muffin pans

Cook until cooked through, about 22 minutes and let them cool on a rack.

When ready, frost with Basic Buttercream or Basic Chocolate Buttercream or any frosting of your choice, and decorate as desired.

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Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes

My son is a chocolate chip cookie fanatic. He asked me if I could make him a cupcake that tastes like a cookie. So, of course, I could not disappoint my child. I found the recipe from another blog, “Annie’s Eats.” I modified it a tiny bit. I used less confectioners’ sugar in the icing, because it seemed too sweet with 3 1/2 cups and I used salted butter in the icing as well, and omitted the salt, but that was because I ran out of unsalted butter.

There is a ton, and I mean a ton, of butter, flour and brown sugar in these. So, if that scares you, back away now. Hey, but one isn’t going to hurt. Right? And what is better than brown sugar and butter?

Nothing.

As I mentioned, I didn’t have all the correct ingredients. For one, I did not have sweetened, condensed milk. Nor condensed milk. for that matter. I had to make my own. A bit of a pain, but it all worked out. The other thing I ran out of was unsalted butter. So for the icing, I used salted and omitted the salt. It turned out just fine. I’ll post the recipe as it’s supposed to be, but keep in mind, if you’re absent-minded like me, you can always work your way around a road block.

Makes 24 cupcakes.

Chocolate Chip Cupcakes

  • 3 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1½ cups light brown sugar, packed
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips   

To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350° F.  Line two cupcake pans with 24 paper liners.  In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and brown sugar.  Beat together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Mix in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl.  Stir together to blend.

Add the dry ingredients to the mixer bowl on low speed, alternating with the milk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients, mixing each addition just until incorporated.  Blend in the vanilla.  Fold in the chocolate chips with a spatula.

Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cupcake liners. Bake for 18-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  

When completely cooled, you’ll need to make a hole in the cupcake for the cookie dough filling. I used the small side of a melon baller for this. Fun part – you have cupcake center to munch on whilst you finish!

Now that that’s done, you can go ahead and make the cookie dough filling. Don’t fret, it’s egg-free.

Cookie Dough Filling

  • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 6 tbsp. light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 cup plus 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 7 oz. sweetened condensed milk*
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup mini semisweet chocolate chips

*Since I didn’t have the sweetened condensed milk, I made my own by simmering 2 cups of milk until reduceed by about 60% and then added 1 1/4 cups of sugar until disolved. Cool, and you have it.

Combine the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and cream on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.  Beat in the flour, sweetened condensed milk and vanilla until incorporated and smooth.  Stir in the chocolate chips.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until the mixture has firmed up a bit, about a half hour.

Using a teapoon, fill the cupcake holes with the cookie dough filling. Set aside and prepare icing.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Icing

  • 3 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ¾ cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 3 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ¾ tsp. salt
  • 3 tbsp. milk
  • 2½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • Mini chocolate chips for decorating

Beat together the butter and brown sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until creamy.  Mix in the confectioners’ sugar until smooth.  Beat in the flour and salt.  Mix in the milk and vanilla extract until smooth.

Pipe icing onto cupcakes and sprinkle with additional mini chips and take a bite.

Enjoy!

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Dark Chocolate Valentine’s Cupcakes with Chambord Ganache

In honor of Valentine’s Day, I thought I’d make a special cupcake with one of those favorite V Day treats, a dark chocolate-covered strawberry.

Dark Chocolate Cupcakes

makes 12 cupcakes

  • 8 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cut up into 4 pieces
  • 1/4 cup of Hershey’s Special Dark Chocolate Chips
  • 1/2 Dutch process cocoa
  • 3/4 all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup sour cream

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin pan with cupcake liners.

Combine the butter, chocolate and cocoa in a heatproof bowl and set it over a pan with barely simmering water. Stir ingredients until smooth and combined. Remove from heat and set aside until just cool enough to touch.

In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt with a whisk.

Whisk eggs in a medium bowl until mixed. Add cooled chocolate mixture and whisk to combine. Sift about one-third of the flour mixture in and whisk until combined. Stir in sour cream. Sift remaining flour mixture in and whisk until thoroughly combined.

Using an ice cream scoop, divide mixture evenly among muffin pan cups. Bake about 20 minutes.

Let cool about 30 minutes before frosting.

Chambord-Spiked Chocolate Ganache Frosting

  • 12 ounce bag of Hershey’s Special Dark Chocolate Chips
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 8 Tbsp. butter
  • 1/4 cup of Chambord

In a food processor, process chips until very fine.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, bring cream to just a soft boil. Bubbles will just begin to form around edge of pan. Remove from heat.

Add cream through the feeding tube of processor and process for about 10 seconds, or until smooth. Pulse in the butter until combined. Add the Chambord with motor running for a few more seconds to combine.

Strain and let sit in refrigerator, covered in plastic wrap for several hours, until hard enough to frost with. Mine took about three hours for piping.

Using a piping bag and tip, pipe icing onto cooled cupcakes and top with a chocolate coverered strawberry.

To make the straweberries, I simply melted chips in the microwave until almost melted. Stir to finish the melting. Dip in a strawberry and lay on a a wire rack and let cool in refrigerator.

Cupcakes adapted from America’s Test Kitchen

Ganache adapted from serveral sources.

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Chocolate Banana Cupcakes with Whipped Caramel Cream

These can be made two ways.  The ones I made today are made with less sugar and contain no milk.  You save on carbs, calories and sugar.  They are delectably yummy.  The whipped cream is flavored with a touch of caramel. Not too sweet. Light and fluffy.  I am very happy with these. The cake itself came out dense and moist and very chocolaty.  I used Dutch process cocoa for them.  Very good stuff.

The only substitutions is the sugar and the milk. So I will put the original ingredients in parentheses next to my modified ingredients for you to use if you wish.

Chocolate Banana Cupcakes

  • 1 3/4 cups (245 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup Splenda Sugar Blend or (2 cups sugar)
  • 3/4 cup (75 grams) Dutch process cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs 
  • 2 bananas, mashed
  • 1 cup (240 ml) warm water 
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) unsweetened almond milk or (1/2 cup milk)
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) canola or corn oil 
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and place rack in the center of the oven. Line 24 regular-sized muffin cups with paper liners or spray each cup with a non stick vegetable spray.

In a large bowl whisk together the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
In another large bowl, whisk together the eggs, mashed bananas, water, milk, oil, and vanilla extract. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir, or whisk, until combined.
Pour or scoop the batter into the muffin cups, about 3/4 full, and bake for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean.
Allow to cool completely and then frost with Whipped Caramel Cream.

Read  http://caloriecount.about.com/lower-sugar-milk-free-chocolate-recipe-r442019#ixzz0zGKYT23j for the complete nutrition analysis.  Using the sugar and milk adds an additional 10 grams of carbs and sugars and 30 calories per cupcake.

Whipped Caramel Cream

  • 1/4 cup cold water
  • 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons of caramel topping

Chill mixing bowl and beaters for at least 15 minutes before using. Place water in a small microwave-safe bowl. Sprinkle gelatin over water and allow to soften 5 minutes.

Dissolve gelatin by microwaving for 2 minutes, stirring after every minute. Remove from microwave and let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes; gelatin must be liquid but not warm when added to cream.

Remove bowl and beaters from refrigerator and pour in cream, sugar, and vanilla extract. Beat together just until beater marks begin to show distinctly.

Add gelatin mixture to cream, pouring in a steady stream while beating constantly. Beat until stiff peaks form. Use immediately.

Pipe or plop on the top of the cooled cupcake.  I drizzled some additional caramel and topped with walnut pieces.


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and place rack in the center of the oven. Line 24 regular-sized muffin cups with paper liners or spray each cup with a non stick vegetable spray.
  • In a large bowl whisk together the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • In another large bowl, whisk together the eggs, mashed bananas, water, milk, oil, and vanilla extract. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir, or whisk, until combined. Pour or scoop the batter into the muffin cups, about 3/4 full, and bake for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean.
  • Read more: http://caloriecount.about.com/lower-sugar-milk-free-chocolate-recipe-r442019#ixzz0zGKYT23j

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    “Mochatella Scrumpcakes” Chocolate Espresso Cupcakes with Nutella Cream Cheese Icing

    Ahhhh! Three of my favorite things. All brought together in a convenient little package. =)

    I was, at first, going to make these with just a whipped cream/cream cheese frosting. Then I found mini chocolate hazelnut biscotti to put on top. So, I thought to myself, why not throw some Nutella in the frosting too? So, that’s what I did.

    Thanks to Ila and Michelle for helping me name them. I will pay you royalties.

    Chocolate Espresso Cupcakes

    • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) hot brewed espresso or very strong coffee
    • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) butter, softened
    • 1 cup granulated sugar
    • 2 large eggs, room temperature
    • 1 2/3 cups flour
    • 1 tsp. baking soda
    • 1/4 tsp. baking powder
    • 1/4 tsp. salt
    • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) sour cream

    Heat oven to 350°. Line muffin cups with paper liners.

    In a small bowl, combine hot espresso, cocoa, and vanilla, stirring until smooth. Set aside to cool.

    In a mixing bowl, cream butter with sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

    In another bowl, combine the flour, soda, baking powder, and salt. Add about one third of the flour mixture to the batter, along with half of the sour cream. Beat until blended. Repeat with another third of the flour mixture and the remaining sour cream. Beat in remaining flour mixture. Beat in the cocoa and espresso mixture until smooth and well blended.

    Fill prepared muffin cups about 1/2 to 2/3 full. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

    Makes about 18 cupcakes.

    Nutella Cream Cheese Icing

    • 8 oz. package reduced-fat cream cheese, softened
    • 1/4 cup (4 Tbsp) butter, softened to room temperature
    • 1/2 cup Nutella
    • about 4 cups of confectioner’s sugar
    • 1 Tbsp. half and half if needed

    In a bowl, combine the cream cheese, Nutella, and butter.

    Beat on high until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Gradually add the powdered sugar, about one cup at a time, beating well after each addition. If needed, add a small amount of half and half (approximately one tablespoon) to adjust the consistency.

    Fill a pastry bag with about a 1/2 cup of frosting and using a 1M star tip, pipe on top of cupcakes.

    If you wish, top with a dusting of cinnamon and a mini chocolate hazelnut biscotti.

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    Almond Joyish Cupcakes

    I had to make these twice.  The first cake recipe left much to be desired.  Too crumbly.  A friend of mine, Missy, gave me her tried and true recipe for devil’s food cake that is much better.

    The coconut filling and chocolate ganache frosting were very good.  No changes were made there.  The coconut recipe I used made a lot of filling.  I had more than enough to fill at least 18 cupcakes.

    The ganache stiffened up nicely in the refrigerator after about two hours, so you may want to make this first.

    Chocolate Ganache Frosting

    • 12 oz. bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips
    • 1 to 1 1/2 cups of heavy cream

    Heat cream to a just boiling in a pan. Be sure to remove it as soon as it boils so it does not boil over.

    Place chips in a large bowl and pour cream over top.  Tap a couple of times on counter to have chips settle in.  Let sit for about two minutes.

    Stir, until it’s completely incorporated.

    Place in refrigerator for about two hours, stirring frequently, until a good consistency for frosting.  Make sure to scrape the hardened parts off the side of the bowl, as this is where it hardens first.  It went from liquid, which is lovely as it was, to this thick deliciousness:


    Missy’s Devil’s Food Cake

    • 1 cup butter {no substitutions)
    • 2 cups sugar
    • 1 tsp vanilla
    • 1 tsp almond extract
    • 2 eggs
    • 2-1/2 cups cake flour
    • 1 cup cocoa
    • 2 tsp baking soda
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    • 2-1/4 cups buttermilk

    Measure flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt into a large bowl.

    Cream butter and sugar, add flavorings and eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

    Add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately to the sugar-butter mixture mixing until all ingredients are well incorporated. Finish by mixing on medium for a minute.

    Preheat oven to 350°.  Place liners into cupcake pans. Evenly distribute batter among cups. I use an ice-cream scoop, filled 2/3 of the way up.

    Side note: This batter is delicious!!!

    Bake 20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

    Remove from pans to cooling rack until completely cooled down.

    Coconut Filling

    • 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
    • 7 oz. pkg. shredded, sweetened coconut

    In a skillet over low, combine the sweetened condensed milk and the coconut. Cook, stirring continuously, for about 10 minutes, or until the milk starts to hold its own path when a spoon is dragged across the bottom of the pan. Set aside to cool.

    Cupcake Assembly

    After cupcakes and filling have cooled and the ganache has hardened enough to pipe or spread, get ready to fill cupcakes.

    Using a small paring knife, cut out a cone shaped piece out of the top of the cupcake.  Using a small spoon, add filling into that cavity.

    Replace cone on top of the hole.

    Using either a piping bag or a knife, either pipe or spread ganache over top of each cupcake, as desired.

    Sprinkle extra coconut on top and add a few almonds to decorate and finish off its Almond Joyishness.

    Refrigerate for about an hour to have filling set up inside cupcake before serving. I found that trying to eat it before that doesn’t work too well.

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    Chocolate-Peanut Butter Cupcakes with Peanut Butter-Cream Icing

    This was my first attempt, ever, at making cupcakes from scratch. They came out pretty good. Or so my family tells me. Just wanted to share.

    My darling daughter helped me make and frost them. She was very excited about the cool baking cups my friend Frank gave me yesterday. Today we used the leopard-print cups.

    Chocolate-Peanut Butter Cupcakes

    • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
    • 3 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
    • 3 tablespoons baking cocoa
    • 1 1/4 cups 2% milk
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
    • 3 large eggs
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. If desired, line cupcake pans with paper liners. You may also spray cupcake pans with a butter and flour combination spray that can be found in your local grocery store.Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Mix at low-speed for 30 seconds while scraping bowl. Mix at high speed for 3 minutes, scraping bowl every minute.

    Spoon cupcake batter into liners until they are 1/2 to 2/3 full (I used an ice-cream scoop). You should have enough batter for 24 cupcakes.

    Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

    Cool 10 minutes in pans then move to wire rack to cool completely.

    Peanut Butter-Cream Icing

    • 4 cups powdered sugar
    • 1/2 cup milk
    • 1/2 cup butter or margarine
    • 1 cup peanut butter
    • 2 tsp. vanilla

    Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl and mix on high-speed until smooth and creamy. Makes enough for 24 + cupcakes.

    P.S. I tasted a forkful of one. This frosting is excellent.

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