Valentine’s Day Yummies | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 14 February 2013 13:21

021413fNothing says “Happy Valentine’s Day” like  a homemade chocolate treat. There’s still time to bake a batch of quick-and-easy cupcakes!

CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES

3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1-1/2 cups sugar

1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

3/4 cup warm water

3/4 cup buttermilk

3 tablespoons safflower oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners; set aside. Sift together cocoa powder, flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a large bowl. Add eggs, warm water, buttermilk, oil and vanilla, and mix until smooth, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of bowl to assure batter is well mixed.

Divide batter evenly among muffin cups, filling each 2/3 full. Bake until tops spring back when touched, about 20 minutes, rotating pan once if needed. Transfer to a wire rack; let cool completely.

Yields 12 cupcakes. Frost with Buttercream or other favorite icing.

Buttercream Icing

1 stick butter

1-1/2 cups powdered sugar

2 tablespoons milk

Have butter and milk at room temperature.

Place butter in small bowl of electric mixer and beat until butter is as white as possible.

Gradually add about half the sifted icing sugar and 1 tablespoon of milk, beating constantly.

Beat in the remaining icing sugar and milk, if necessary. Mixture should be smooth and easy to spread with a spatula. Add extra milk or icing sugar until cupcake frosting is of a spreadable or piping consistency. Makes enough for 2 dozen cupcakes.

MOLTEN CHOCOLATE MOCHA CUPCAKES

2 tablespoons butter, plus more for ramekins

1/3 cup confectioners’ sugar, plus more

2 ounces semisweet chocolate, broken into pieces

1 large egg

1 large egg yolk

1 teaspoon espresso powder

Pinch salt

3 tablespoons flour

Preheat oven to 400°F. Butter two 6-ounce ramekins, then dust with sugar. Place butter and chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high in 20-second increments, stirring after each, until melted. Let cool slightly.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together egg, egg yolk, 1/3 cup sugar, espresso powder and salt. Add chocolate mixture; whisk to combine. Add flour, and whisk just until combined (do not overmix). Pour batter into prepared ramekins. (Recipe can be made ahead up to this point.)

Bake until a toothpick inserted 1/2 inch from edge of ramekins comes out clean, and a toothpick inserted in center comes out wet, 10 to 12 minutes (do not overbake). Cool 10 minutes on a wire rack. Run a knife around inside of ramekins to loosen. Invert cakes onto serving plates. Dust with sugar; serve immediately. Yields 2.

To double or triple this recipe, just add three or four minutes to the baking time.

RED VELVET CUPCAKES

1/2 cup butter

1-1/2 cups white sugar

2 eggs

1 cup buttermilk

1 fluid ounce red food coloring

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease two 12-cup muffin pans or line with 20 paper baking cups.

In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Mix in the eggs, buttermilk, red food coloring and vanilla. Stir in the baking soda and vinegar. Combine the flour, cocoa powder and salt; stir into the batter just until blended. Spoon the batter into the prepared cups, dividing evenly.

Bake in the preheated oven until the tops spring back when lightly pressed, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool in the pan set over a wire rack. When cool, arrange the cupcakes on a serving platter and frost with desired frosting. Yields 20.

CHOCOLATE & CREAM CHEESE CUPCAKES

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened

1 egg

1/3 cup sugar

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips

1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup white sugar

1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup water

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1 tablespoon cider vinegar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line muffin tins with paper cups or lightly spray with non-stick cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese, egg, the 1/3 cup sugar and the 1/8 teaspoon salt until light and fluffy. Stir in the chocolate chips and set aside.

In a large bowl, mix together the flour, 1 cup sugar, cocoa, baking soda and 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Make a well in the center and add the water, oil, vinegar and vanilla. Stir together until well blended. Fill muffin tins 1/3 full with the batter and top with a dollop of the cream cheese mixture.

Bake in preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes. Yields 2 dozen.

 

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