October 28, 2008

TWD: "Hot" Chocolate Cupcakes & Chocolate Mint Cupcakes





Who doesn't like cupcakes? When Clara from I Heart Food 4 Thought selected Dorie's Chocolate Chocolate Cupcakes, I was thrilled. Especially since I would get to bake them for my birthday! Well, it was yesterday, but it was still really fun to bake cupcakes for my birthday like I was a kid again. However, these are a little more grown-up.

Since I've gotten more confident in my baking skills, I was able to look at these cupcakes as a blank canvas - open to possibilities like flavored fillings, different toppings, etc. One of the Nesties on the Money Matters board suggested that I stick an Andes mint in the middle, which was totally brilliant! Alex suggested that I use our Spicy Hot Cocoa for some, which was also brilliant. I bought the Spicy Hot Cocoa at a conference expo in August from an organic fair-trade company and it's absolutely delish.
It added a great chocolaty flavor and spicy heat to my "Hot" Chocolate cupcakes. I also sprinkled in just a little more cayenne to balance out the extra chocolate. For the Chocolate Mint Cupcakes, I pushed one Andes mint down into the batter, and then smoothed it over to cover. I also melted a few Andes mints into the glaze. In the end, the mint in the cupcake didn't melt like I had hoped, so I think next time I might break up little pieces into the batter.

Many of the Dorie bakers said that these cupcakes were dry and there was a lot of speculation on the posting board about the chemistry of flour by volume or weight and butter versus oil. I decided to replace the 1/2 cup of buttermilk with 1/2 cup of plain yogurt to increase moisture. The baking time was also listed at 20-25 minutes, so I tested them at 18 and found that there were done. I'm so glad that we have the Questions and Comments sections on the TWD site. It's been incredibly helpful with all the recipes.

The only things I weren't crazy about was whisking the butter into the glaze (hello tired arms!) and the buttery taste that came as a result. I think that 2 tablespoons were a little too much, flavor wise. The actual butter taste was pretty prominent compared to the chocolate and I didn't like that. The mint glaze didn't have that problem because of the extra candies mixed in, but next time, I might cut down on the butter. Could I possibly say "butter" one more time in a paragraph? Butter. Butter. Butter. Parkay. (anyone? anyone? Bueller?)

Overall, I liked how they were densely fudgey and more adult tasting than everyday fluffy cupcakes. The added yogurt really kept them moist and I'm glad I didn't over bake them. The Andes mint in the middle was fun, and I liked the spicy back-of-the-throat-heat that we got on the "Hot" chocolate ones. I was surprised that I ended up liking the glaze more than I like regular frosting. That's tough for me to admit because I'm a frosting girl all the way! The ganache glaze was rich without being too sweet, and it really upped the sophistication on the cupcakes. Great selection, Clara! I will definitely make these again.







***This will be my last TWD post for a few weeks. That makes me very sad, since I was so excited about baking next weeks Rugelach. I travel for part of my job and most of my November will be spent on the road. I'll be sure to try lots of baked goods along the way and report on the oh-so-exciting life of a grad school recruiter. "Ooooh, this hotel room has cable! Fancy!"

16 comments:

chocolatechic said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Oh...I love your idea of the spicy hot chocolate

Brilliant~

Annette said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Your cupcakes sound delicious! Very creative using spicy hot chocolate and mint. I skipped this week because we're leaving town for a few days, but I'll have to make these at a later date. Wishing you safe travels!

Cristine said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Happy belated birthday! Great variations! :)

Jess said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

How creative with the spicy hot chocolate and the mint flavors...I love Andes mints and will have to try that sometime.

SUGAR BETTY said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Your chocolate cupcakes look pretty fancy and delicious! Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! ;)

kim said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

yum, spicy chocolate and mint sounds like a great combo! good luck with your travels and hope to see you back soon :)

Engineer Baker said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Haha - butter, butter, butter, parkay - too funny. Love the cayenne idea, and I look forward to when you can join back in again!

Isa said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Yum, those cupcakes look delicious! Chocolate goes so well with hot stuff
Btw, thanks so much for being a follower of my blog! You're SO sweet :D

Flourchild said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Your cupcakes look very good..I really love your mint idea. I noticed you liked that song I've been working on the railroad , I loved that song when I was a little girl! I would drive my brothers nuts singing it at the top of my lungs!

Rebecca said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Oh, I love, love, love your flavor choices! We're expecting our first real frost of the season, and I am craving some spicy hot chocolate.

Fit Chick said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I will try again with yogurt, thanks for the idea. Your cupcakes look great.

Liz said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Oh hubba hubba, two of my favorite flavor combinations in one post! Your cupcakes sound fantastic and the pics are great.

Liz said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Two of my favorite flavor choices in one blog post! They look and sound divine.

Carmen Cooks said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Oh yum! I like the use of the spicy hot chocolate. Have fun on the road!

Barbara said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Love the spicy hot chocolate idea! I have some of Equal Exchange's plain cocoa -- I'll have to look for the spicy stuff too!

Kait said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Spicy hot chocolate - very cool! Also, I'm pretty sure it's not a Dorie post if you don't have to say butter at least once or twice.