Sunday, November 21, 2010

Mocha Cupcakes with Kahlua Frosting

As a warning, this recipe will likely be my last post until after I return from American Thanksgiving. With luck, I'll return with some good classic Southern recipes to share. In the meantime, feel free to revisit the Thanksgiving recipe bonanza from last year.

A friend of mine is hosting a board game afternoon today, so of course I wanted to make cupcakes to bring over to her place. After consulting with her preferences (she wanted something with coffee in it), I decided to make a recipe I've been eying since mid-summer when baking was less than a popular activity in my apartment. The original recipe calls for a berry buttercream frosting, but it's definitely not the time of year for berries and I have a bottle of kahlua from making the cappuccino fudge cheesecake. My only complaint with the kahlua frosting is that it didn't setup very nicely (I probably should've chilled it before trying to pipe the cupcakes!), but it's delicious so I'm going to go ahead and share it with you! I also now have 8 egg whites sitting in the freezer, so expect some experimental chocolate peppermint macarons for the holidays.

The only changes I made to the cupcake recipe were to only use dutch-processed cocoa powder (she also uses black cocoa) and to only use espresso powder (she uses espresso and instant coffee).

Mocha Cupcakes (adapted from Desserts for Breakfast) with Kahlua Frosting (from Crazy Monkey House Eats)

Ingredients for Cupcakes
makes ~15-18 regular-sized cupcakes (or 12 with one ramekin for tasting before you go to the party)

1 cup (225g) sugar
1 cup (110g) flour
8 tbsp (48g) Dutch-processed cocoa powder
4 Tbspn espresso powder, divided
1/2 tspn salt
1 tspn baking powder
1 tspn baking soda
1 egg
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup boiling water

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line the cupcake molds with cupcake liners and set aside.
2. In a mixer bowl, combine sugar, flour, Dutch-processed cocoa powder, 2 tbsp espresso powder, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Mix to combine.
3. In a separate bowl, combine the beaten egg, vegetable oil, and milk. Stir to mix.
4. Then, with the mixer on low, pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Mix on low until evenly distributed.
5. Combine the boiling water and 2 tbsp espresso powder.
6. Pour the hot coffee into the cake batter and mix on medium low until smooth, making sure to occasionally scrape the bottom of the bowl.
7. Fill the cupcake liners 2/3 full.
8. Bake for 15-20 minutes. When a toothpick inserted at the center of the cupcake comes out cleanly, the cakes are done. Remove from the oven and let cool completely.

Ingredients for frosting
8 egg yolks
2/3 cup sugar
4 tbs kahlua
1 1/2 butter, softened
2 tsp vanilla

1. In a double boiler over boiling water, combine the egg yolks, sugar, and kahlua. Whisk until the mixture becomes thick and has a pale, even color (5-10 minutes). Remove from heat and let cool.
2. In a mixer bowl, combine the butter and vanilla. Mix with the electric mixer until the butter is very fluffy.
3. Slowly incorporate the kahlua mixture into the butter. Mix until well blended. The frosting is now ready to use.

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