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Mint Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting (and winner of the giveaway!)

August 27, 2010

Ho ho ho. Doesn’t this sound positively festive? I thought it would be fun to get a start on experimenting with Christmas bakes so that when December rolls around I won’t be scrambling for ideas.

Ok – I just said all that to impress you. The honest truth is, a few nights ago I made a batch of Martha Stewart’s delicious Chocolate Frosting in the hopes of frosting the two Dense Chocolate Loaf Cakes I had baked, but ended up using very little of the frosting, so I needed something else to frost. When I realised I had a completely untouched bottle of Nielsen Massey Pure Peppermint Extract in my refrigerator, I decided to make Mint Chocolate Cupcakes. Just for fun. =)

I got the base cupcake ingredient proportions from this cute little book my friend Wendy gave me, but the recipe is otherwise my own. The end product turned out much better than I had hoped, and I’m pretty sure I’ll be making another batch of these come Christmas. They’re dense enough to be cupcakes, but moist enough that they go down easy, and full of mintey chocolatey goodness!

Clare – 1     Christmas baking stress – 0

I think my friend Angie put it well when she said the cupcakes were very “refreshing”. I couldn’t have picked a better adjective! They really are refreshing, and flavourful without being too sweet. Which might be why I had major troubles stopping at just one…

Clare – 0    Waistline – 1

But hey, that’s what the gym is for =)

So without further ado, here are my recipe for Mint Chocolate Cupcakes and Martha Stewart’s recipe for Chocolate Frosting (which I got from the absolutely fabulous September issue of Martha Stewart Living. It has a whole section on all the essential kinds of frosting! Joy!)

Mint Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting

(Chocoalte frosting adapted from Martha Stewart Living Sep 2010)

Click here for printable recipe.

Ingredients (makes 18 cupcakes):

For the cupcakes

  • 225g unsalted butter, softened
  • 225g caster sugar
  • 4 eggs (about 160g in weight), lightly beaten
  • 1-1/2 tsp peppermint extract
  • 225g self-raising flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1tsp baking powder

For the frosting (enough for at least two batches of these cupcakes)

  • 340g bittersweet chocolate
  • 220g cream cheese
  • 110g unsalted butter
  • 330g icing sugar
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 cup crème fraîche

Directions:

1. Heat oven to 180 degC.

2. First make the cupcakes. Using an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar for a few minutes on medium speed. Be sure to use a spatula to scrape down the inside of the mixing bowl mid-way. Add in the eggs and peppermint extract and mix well. Finally sift in the flour, cocoa powder and baking powder, and beat untill well blended.

3. Pour batter into a muffin pan lined with cupcake papers and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.

4. Remove muffin pan from oven and leave to cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack. Then remove cupcakes from the pan and allow to cool completely.

5. While cupcakes are cooling, make the frosting. First melt bittersweet chocolate in a dish over boiling water (bain marie) and leave aside to cool.

6. Using an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat cream cheese and butter on medium speed until pale and fluffy. Sift in the icing sugar, cocoa powder and salt, and beat into cream cheese mixture on slow speed. Pour in melted chocoalte in a steady stream, then beat in the crème fraîche until well-blended. If frosting is too liquid to work with, put in the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes.

7. Frost cupcakes any way you like, sprinkle on some coloured sugar, stick in a little mint leaf, et voila!

Smear it on…

Swirl it on from outside in…

Swirl it on from inside out…

Doesn’t really matter, cos it tastes so good any which way!

Finally, a big thank you to everyone who participated in the giveaway! I did a random drawing and TIGERFISH was the lucky winner! CONGRATULATIONS! One pretty patchwork table mat is headed your way…

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11 Comments leave one →
  1. August 27, 2010 5:31 pm

    So pretty with the coloured sugar! I love the shot of chocolate batter in the mixing bowl!

  2. August 28, 2010 12:25 am

    WOW so look pretty! Love that frosting 🙂

  3. August 28, 2010 12:39 am

    Thanks for the giveaway 🙂 …

    Yes indeed the cupcakes look very Christmasy! Chocolate is good for me, chocolate is good for me, chocolate is good for me…*fading* chocolate is good for me.

    Sorry…chocoholic commenting here. ;p

  4. Lazy Susan permalink
    August 28, 2010 10:17 am

    yums! the icing swirls look so pretty!

  5. August 28, 2010 4:02 pm

    pigpigscorner, ann, tigerfish, Lazy Susan: Thanks so much =) Your comments are encouraging. Just had a bit of a cheesecake disaster so feeling a little kitchen-unworthy!

  6. August 29, 2010 10:54 am

    Gorgeous! Gives a new meaning to summer holidays.

    Have you put the photos on Fiddme yet?

  7. August 29, 2010 1:04 pm

    Your food is becoming prettier, lovelier with each post, Clare!

  8. August 29, 2010 1:52 pm

    wow you’re really planning early for Christmas! and congratulations, tigerfish =D

  9. August 30, 2010 3:04 pm

    Hi Clare,
    This mint chocolate cupcake with the chocolate frosting looks so good! I’ve not made a proper cupcake with frosting for a long long time. This really tempted me to bake and indulge! Thanks for sharing! Ooh…so good!

  10. September 1, 2010 4:37 am

    Wow, these little cupcakes are SO cute and chocolate and mint must taste SO yummie!

  11. September 3, 2010 11:13 am

    Allyberman10, Ju, Jane, Juliana: thanks girls 🙂
    Noobcook: yah I can’t wait! Just 3.5 months to go! Wheee….

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