Thursday, 5 April 2012

My Signature Mint Chocolate Cupcakes

Every home baker has their signature 'go to' show stopper cupcake, I get asked a lot of this recipe from friends and family - its a closely guarded secret, but I think its time to share the wealth. I can't recall the original source of this recipe, but I have altered it over time and simplified where ever possible.

How to make the cakes:
This recipe will make about 12-15 muffin sized cupcakes.
(the cakes are egg, milk and butter free)

 1 1/2 cups of Plain flour
1/3 cup of Dark Cocoa powder
1 tsp Baking soda
1 cup Caster Sugar
1 pinch Salt
1 cup of cold water
1/4 cup plus 1tbs Vegetable Oil
1 tbs White Wine vinegar
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 tsp mint Extract

Step 1: Pre-heat oven to  180ºC/350ºF/gas 4 and prep your muffin trays and cases.

Step 2: Sift all the dry ingredients together into a large bowl: Flour, Cocoa, Baking Soda, Sugar and salt.

Step 3: In a medium bowl whisk all the remaining (wet) ingredients: Water, Vegetable oil, Vanilla, Mint and Vinegar.
Step 4: In the bowl of your electric mixer (or in a separate large bowl if using a hand mixer or wooden spoon) combine a third of your dry ingredients with about half of the wet and mix well.

Step 5: Add a further 1/3 of the dry and the remainder of the wet, and mix well (if using an electric mixer remember to use a spatula to scrap down the sides and make sure the mixture isn't sticking to the base).

Step 6: Add the last of the dry ingredients and mix for a further 2-3 minutes.
Step 7: The mixture will be incredibly runny, you can just spoon or pour the mixture into your cake cases, but a slightly less messy technique I've discovered is to pour the mix into a disposable piping bag, cut a small opening at the tip and then gently squeeze the mixture into the cases. Each case should be about 1/3 full.

Step 8. Pop your trays into the centre of your oven and cook for 20-25 minutes (or until a cocktail stick comes out clean when poked in the centre).

Step 9: Leave to cool.

The icing
(contains milk and butter)
125g of softened butter
300g Icing sugar
1 tbs cold milk
1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
1 tsp mint extract (add more to taste)
Green Food colouring paste
Chocolate decorations for finishing

Step 1: Cream together butter, vanilla and mint add the sugar little by little and the milk, mix until light and fluffy.

Step 2: Add the food colouring paste (a cocktail stick's worth at a time) till you reach your desired colour.

Step 3: Spoon into piping bag and ice the cooled cakes.

Step 4: Decorate.

Please let me know how you get on with making these, any suggestions or amendments to the recipe greatly accepted.

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