Sunday, December 13, 2009

Devil's Food Cupcakes with Mint Chocolate Chip Buttercream

Lately I've been looking for good cupcake recipes but until recently I really haven't had any that lived up to my favorite box mix- Duncan Hines Devil's Food. (I hate to admit that cause box mixes are full of so much crap and generally not as good as homemade but the devil's food has always been my favorite). I had a few failed attempts at red velvet earlier in the year and gave up for a couple months but Colin's birthday is coming up so I decided to try again. He really like mint things (ice cream etc) so I decided to make mint chocolate chip cupcakes. I went with a devil's food recipe from CHOCKYLIT. Her recipe calls for mixing everything straight in the bowl which left me a bit skeptical but I went with it and they came out great! Moist and chocolatey and far better than any mix (I'll never buy Duncan Hines again).

For the frosting I used a simple buttercream but instead of adding vanilla I added 1/4tsp peppermint extract. It might have been just a little too minty for me and I think next time I would start off with 1/8tsp and add a little more if needed.

Devil's Food Chocolate Cake
I used organic fair trade unsweetened cocoa powder from my local food coop and they came out great but if a fair trade cocoa isn't available near you than a high quality cocoa such as Ghirardelli or Valrhona will work just as well (maybe better).
makes 24 cupcakes

2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
2 cups unrefined pure cane sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1-1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup butter
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

1. Measure out everything but the eggs directly into your mixer bowl.
2. Mix on low speed just until incorporated.
3. Beat on high speed for 2 minutes.
4. Add eggs, beat on high speed again for 2 minutes.

Measure out into cupcake pan lined with cupcake papers. A 2" ice cream scoop works great for this. Bake for about 15-20 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool slightly in the pan then transfer to a rack to cool completely before frosting.

Peppermint Buttercream
Frosts 24 Cupcakes or 9in 2 layer cake.

2 sticks unsalted butter
4 cups powdered sugar (don't bother using organic here, it turns out kinda grayish)
1/4 cup skim milk
1/8-1/4 tsp organic pure peppermint extract

Beat butter and powdered sugar with an electric hand or stand mixer add milk and and peppermint to taste. Beat until thoroughly combined. If not using right away store covered in the fridge up to a day or two or freeze. Bring to room temperature before frosting. If using now, fit pastry bag with desired tip (I used the star), and frost cupcakes.

Sprinkle with mini chocolate chips.

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