Saturday, March 14, 2009

Week 24: Café Chocolada Cupcakes with Orange Mascarpone Whipped Cream Frosting Topped with a Heart Shaped Brownie

Hi friends! I believe Mother Nature must have been reading The Cupcakery Blog since my last posting. Perhaps I made a slight complaint about the weather we have been having in New York. The month of March came in like a lion and we experienced yet another blast of winter weather! The storm which came through the Hudson Valley dumped over 12 inches of snow and you can guess what that meant.... more shoveling, more scraping ice and LOTS more hot drinks! More than ever dear friends, I am very much "over" this winter weather!

I was disappointed a blizzard decided to hit on the same weekend my Aunt and Uncle celebrated their 11th wedding anniversary. The roads were not condusive to travelling, so I had plenty of time to experiment and come up with a batch of cupcakes for their special occassion.

Now, for those of you who read The Cupcakery blog often, you already know I am going to be in hot water for posting the picture above, but I know I am forgiven for coming up with such a wonderful cupcake for such a special day. At least I hope I am!

You might wonder where I came up with all the flavors for this cupcake, well here is my train of thought: I was remembering a trip to Barcelona, Spain. I made a side trip to the Museu de la Xocolata to soothe my sweet-tooth. A museum dedicated entirely to chocolate. I had the Museums famous hot cocoa in which you can stand a spoon because it is so thick! I could not get enough of the Catalonian café con leche in Barcelona either. I love chocolate and I love coffee. Their creamy flavors gave me inspiration for this cupcake. When you take your first bite each taste bud will tingle with flavors then you will be amazed at how moist they are.

How to top them? Well, I am also a fan of a citrus and chocolate combination. I have been curious about pairing these two favorites with mascarpone cheese and a whipped cream frosting. I added orange zest and fresh squeezed orange juice resulting in a tangy, creamy, not too sweet, just a perfect frosting. Next time I will add more juice because I prefer to have a bit more zing in my frosting which was very refreshing. To top off this treat I added a heart shaped brownie, because who doesn't love a brownie on top of all this goodness?

Some shaved chocolate would be lovely too, or shaved "chocolate orange" candy which has the essential components of this theme, but I did not have any in my pantry so I opted to use chocolate jimmies. You might think with this much chocolate it could be overwhelming, but it is not. In fact, it is quite a delightful dessert and you will savor every mouthful. Just be careful, you might want seconds!

Best!

Café Chocolada Cupcakes

24 cupcakes

1-1/3 cups all-purpose flour

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup milk

1/2 cup strong brewed coffee, cooled

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

1 large egg


1) Preheat to 350°F and line cupcake pan with liners.

2) Sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

3) In a seperate bowl combine milk and brewed coffee.

4) In a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.

5) Add the egg and beat until combined.

6) Slowly add the flour mixture, alternating with the coffee mixture, ending with the flour mixture.

7) Fill cupcake liners about 2/3 full. Bake 17-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean.

8) VERY IMPORTANT to let the cupcakes cool completely before frosting.

Orange Mascarpone Whipped Cream Frosting

1/4 cup mascarpone cheese, room temperature
2 tablespoons fresh squeezed orange juice
1/2 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 teaspoon orange zest

*This is the original recipe, but I doubled the recipe for a most zesty, orange flavor.

1) Before starting, put your stainless steel bowl and arms for the mixer in the freezer for 5 minutes. Cold stainless steel makes the mixture form peaks faster.

2) In the bowl, stir together the mascarpone cheese and orange juice until smooth.

3) Add the cream, powdered sugar, and orange zest.

4) Whip until the cream has soft peaks, about 1 minute.

5) Pipe topping onto the cupcakes.

6) Makes enough to top 16 cupcakes.

Bake a pan of brownies using this recipe. Cut out using a heart shaped cookie cutter. Ensure brownies have cooled completely before topping Orange Mascarpone Whipped Cream Frosting. Sprinkle with chocolate jimmies.

6 comments:

Kelvin said...

I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


Joannah

http://myscones.com/

Wendy said...

Hi KELVIN: Thank you for leaving a comment! I always like to read them and most importantly I like to know you like visiting. I hope you come back soon. Best! xoxo

Dana said...

What a wonderful blog! I just came across it looking for chocolate cupcakes and made these...absolutely delicious. I wanted to leave you a comment as I've tried MANY choc cupcake recipes (including other food blogs, food network etc) and these are by far the best ones I've made...so thank you so much for sharing your recipe.

I often find most choc cupcakes very dry or sugary/grainy, but these were very soft, moist and nice texture without being crazy sweet. very chocolatey too!

Thanks and I look forward to reading about your next creations. Keep up the great work :)

Cheers!

Wendy said...

Hi DANA: Thank you so much for your kind words. You are too sweet! I am glad you came across my blog too and I am tickled you tried my recipe and liked it. I enjoy hearing feedback!

I hope you will try other recipes. Looking forward to sharing more. Best! xoxo

Sophie said...

These sound great, I really like what you did with the brownie--too cute :)!

Wendy said...

Hi SOPHIE: These cupcakes were really great! The brownie was an extra treat and so delicious! Thanks for checking in! Best! xoxo