Wednesday, April 2, 2008
Week 14: Resplendent with Flavor; Chocolate Fudge Frangelico Cupcake with Banana Cream Center and Peanut Butter Frosting
Hi friends! Just wait until you try this cupcake! Oh my, it is such a treat I am not sure what to describe first! I am delighted each time I create a new recipe. I love each part of the process; from the mixing, baking, scooping, cooling and frosting to the very best part when you finally get to unwrap the foil cupcake wrapper in anticipation of the very first bite. The scent of fresh baked chocolates and brown sugar, melded together with buttermilk and chocolate chips is heavenly. The surprising twist of Frangelico in the mix lingers and plays with your senses and is only momentarily forgotten when you taste the deliriously tangy peanut butter cream cheese frosting which is nothing short of exquisite. The very best part of this cupcake is the fabulously rich banana cream pudding center. You will want to sit down when you eat this because you simply might get weak in the knees from this flavorful combination.
I believe we all eat with our eyes well before food reaches our lips. We decide what looks good and tempting to us; much in the way we decide what is appealing to us in our every day life! Cupcakes are a little gift. They are the perfect size and have the perfect surface to decorate and experiment on.
This recipe is a tantalizing taste bud experience which combines the basic elements of chocolate, peanut butter and banana ~ and as I usually do, I have given the recipe a Cupcakery twist, all of this in a lovely foil wrapper!
Enjoy this delight and have a happy week!
Chocolate Fudge Frangelico Cupcakes
Makes 24 cupcakes
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate, melted (see Note)
1 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup Frangelico
12 oz. mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
(Note: To melt the chocolate, place in a double boiler over simmering water on low heat for approximately 5–10 minutes. Stir occasionally until completely smooth and no pieces of chocolate remain. Remove from the heat and let cool to lukewarm 5–10 minutes.)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Line two 12-cup muffin tins with cupcake papers. Set aside.
3. In a small bowl, sift together the flour and baking soda. Set aside.
4. In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugars and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes.
5. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
6. Add the chocolate, mixing until well incorporated.
7. Add the dry ingredients in three parts, alternating with the buttermilk and vanilla. With each addition, beat until the ingredients are incorporated, but do not overbeat.
8. Using a rubber spatula, scrape down the batter in the bowl to make sure the ingredients are well blended and the batter is smooth.
9. Fold in Frangelico and mini-chocolate chips.
10. Carefully spoon the batter into the cupcake liners, filling them about three-quarters full. Bake for 20–25 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center of the cupcake comes out clean.
11. VERY IMPORTANT: Cool the cupcakes in the tins for 15 minutes. Remove from the tins and cool completely on a wire rack before icing.
Banana Cream Pudding
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1 1/2 cups ice cold water
1 (3.4-ounce) package instant banana cream pudding mix (preferably Jell-O brand)
3 cups heavy cream
1 tsp. vanilla
1. In a small bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, beat together the sweetened condensed milk and water until well combined, about 1 minute. Add the pudding mix and beat well, about 2 minutes more. Add vanilla, beat again to incorporate.
2. In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, whip the heavy cream until stiff peaks form. Gently fold the pudding mixture into the whipped cream until well blended and no streaks of pudding remain. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and allow to chill in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours.
Peanut Butter Frosting
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1/8 tsp. salt
1 cup smooth peanut butter
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
4 cups confectioners' sugar
1 Tbsp. milk
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1. Beat the butter, peanut butter, salt and cream cheese on medium speed with an electric mixer, until light and fluffy.
2. Slowly add the confectioner's sugar and continue to mix until the frosting is smooth.
3. Mix in the milk and vanilla, continue to mix until frosting reaches a good spreading consistency.
4. Pipe onto completely cooled cupckaes with large star tip.