Saturday, 1 February 2014

{I Love You Berry Much} Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with Berry Buttercream

With less than two weeks to go until Valentine's Day, I am sure many of you are looking for ideas on celebrating the day. Last week I talked about our romantic getaway at Hillsnek Safaris. This week I'm going to give you  the first of three ideas to win your way into your partners stomach with food. The best way to go as far as I'm concerned!

These cupcakes combine a beautiful dark chocolate cupcake with a berry Swiss meringue buttercream. As an extra bonus, when you bite into these beauties you find a white Lindt truffle in the middle. Its a perfect flavour combination!

For the icing, I used berry coulis to give the berry flavour, but you could substitute this with 1 cup of fresh raspberries or 1/4 cup of berry purée. The dark chocolate glaze on top adds a bit of extra decadence, but the cupcakes are just as delicious without it.

Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with a Berry Buttercream
Adapted from Sweetapolita

Dark Chocolate Cupcakes
190g flour
300g white sugar
60g cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp salt
160ml buttermilk
120ml hot coffee
95ml conola oil
2 eggs (room temperature, lightly beaten)
1 tbsp vanilla essence
24 white Lindt truffles, frozen

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C and line two cupcakes tins with liners.
  2. In a large bowl, sift together flour, sugar, cocoa power, baking soda, baking powder, cornstarch and salt.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix together the buttermilk, coffee, oil, vanilla and eggs.
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until well combined (about 2 minutes).
  5. Fill the cupcake liners to 2/3 full.
  6. Bake for 10 minutes. While the cupcakes are baking, unwrap the Lindt truffles.
  7. Remove the cupcakes from the oven and place a frozen truffle in the middle of each (do not push them in).
  8. Return the cupcakes to the oven for a further 7 minutes.
  9. Allow to cool in the pan for a few minutes and then place on a wire rack to cool completely before icing.
Berry Swiss Meringue Buttercream
5 egg whites
250g sugar
340g unsalted butter (cut into cubes, about 1 tbsp in size)
2 tsp vanilla essence
60ml berry coulis
pink food colouring (optional)
  1. Ensure that your large, heat-proof bowl is cleaned. Wipe down with lemon and paper towel if you are unsure. Any little bit of fat or dirt will prevent your egg whites from becoming light and fluffy.
  2. Place the egg whites and sugar in the bowl and place over a pot of simmering water. Make sure that the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl.
  3. Whisk the egg whites constantly, by hand, until the sugar has completely dissolved and the mixture feels warm to the touch.
  4. Remove the bowl from the heat and beat with an electric mixer until the bowl feels cool to the touch (this will take about 10 minutes).
  5. With your mixer on low speed, add in the butter a cube at a time, making sure each block is combined before adding in the next.
  6. Add the vanilla and salt and mix for another minute.
  7. Add in the berry coulis and food colouring. Mix until well combined.
Dark Chocolate Glaze (optional)
115g dark chocolate (I used 70%)
76g unsalted butter
  1. Melt the chocolate and butter in a heat proof bowl over a pot simmering water, stirring with a rubber spatula.
  1. Frost the cupcakes with the berry buttercream, either pipe or spread it.
  2. Drizzle some of the dark chocolate glaze on top.

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