I know it's still aways until Saint Patrick's Day, but I just love all the green everywhere during the month of March and thought I'd get started a little early with these cupcakes. I am obsessed with the vibrant green shade of these sprinkles, and really liked how moss-like they ended up in appearance once I covered the cupcake tops with them. I've been battling some clovers that have taken root in one of my rose's pots for over a year now, and was able to put some of them to use as little decorative toppers for the cakes.
|Take that, weeds!|
I used this chocolate cake recipe from Ina Garten as the base for the cupcakes and frosting, altering it just a tad. One of the things I changed was using chicory coffee rather than straight coffee, because I just like the flavor of chicory coffee better; but feel free to use regular-old coffee if you'd like. The cupcakes came out so moist and light, and the frosting was wonderfully fluffy. But I think my favorite part of these cupcakes was the texture contrast between the slight crunch of the sprinkles and the soft and spongey cake.
And luckily, I will get to share some of these sprinkles with one of you, as the kind people at King Arthur Flour have decided to do a little Saint Patrick's Day cupcake giveaway! The giveaway will include:
- King Arthur Flour Small Sugar Shamrocks
- King Arthur Flour Shamrock Cupcake Liners
- Voucher for a Free Bag of King Arthur Flour, redeemable at your local grocery store
To enter the giveaway, leave a comment below about your favorite St. Paddy's-related food or drink item. For extra entries, you can:
If you already do any of those things, just leave a separate comment on this post saying you do. The deadline for entries is 11:59 pm PST March 8th, and the winner will be announced March 9th. Good luck and happy spring!
Chicory Coffee Chocolate Cupcakes
2 Eggs, room temperature
2 Cups Sugar
1 and 3/4 Cup Unbleached All-Purpose King Arthur Flour
1 Cup Buttermilk
3/4 Cups Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1/2 Cup Olive Oil
2 Teaspoons Baking Soda
1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
1 Teaspoon Salt
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 Teaspoon Coffee Extract
1 Cup Freshly Brewed Chicory Coffee, warm but not hot
Chocolate Amaretto Buttercream
2 Egg Yolks, room temperature
1 and 1/3 Cups Powdered Sugar
1 Cup Unsalted Butter, room temperature
6 Ounces Bittersweet Chocolate Chips
2 Teaspoons Amaretto Liquor
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and grease the top of a cupcake pan (in case the cupcake tops come over the sides when rising, they won't get stuck to the pan), then line the pan with cupcake liners. Set aside. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt until completely combined. Set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the buttermilk, olive oil, eggs, vanilla extract, and coffee extract at a low speed until well-blended. Slowly add the dry ingredient mixture to the mixing bowl, continuing to beat at a low speed and scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Add the cup of chicory coffee and continue mixing until it is just combined. Distribute the batter into the cupcake liners, filling them up about 2/3rds of the way (they will rise when baking). Place the pan in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Place on a wire rack to cool.
While the cupcakes are baking, you can start making the frosting. Melt down the chocolate in a double boiler over simmering water until it has just completely melted. Remove from heat and set aside to cool to a very slightly warm temperature. (Now, it is very important that the egg yolks and butter are at room temperature when you start making the frosting. If they are cold, then when you add the melted chocolate the chocolate will begin to solidify and you will end up with hard chunks of chocolate in your frosting rather than a nice and smooth buttercream). Beat the butter with the paddle attachment at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg yolks, vanilla extract, and amaretto liquor and beat the mixture for 3 minutes more. Bring the speed to low and slowly add the powdered sugar. Once the powdered sugar has been incorporated, bring the speed up to medium and beat until smooth and fluffy. Bring the speed back down to low and add the melted chocolate and continue beating until the chocolate is just incorporated and the frosting is smooth, taking care not to over beat the mixture and scraping down the bowl as necessary.
When the frosting is done, immediately begin frosting the cupcakes. Then place the decorative sprinkles in a small bowl and, holding the frosted cupcake upside down, gently roll the exposed frosted top in the sprinkles. Hold it upright again to display your thoroughly sprinkled cupcake. Repeat and enjoy!