Sunday, April 10, 2011

Double Chocolate Cupcakes with a Creamy Peanut Butter Buttercream

Chocolate + Peanut Butter = Euphoria.

How can anyone go wrong with chocolate and peanut butter? I can't think of a better combination for a cupcake. These were a big hit. I made them once just because I was bored one day and when my roommates and a couple friends ate them all within 24 hours, I figured it'd be a good idea to make them again. So I did. And this time I brought them to a church fellowship and there wasn't a single one left! As a newbie to this whole thing, it was quite the ego boost!

I have to admit, being the novice baker that I am, the idea of creating a buttercream on my own was a little intimidating but I figured if I was ever going to figure it out, I had to try. This recipe for peanut butter buttercream was surprisingly simple and it was definitely a positive experience.

Unfortunately, the two times that I have made this cupcake, I failed to take pictures of the whole process. However, I did manage to snap a few pictures of the finished product. Enjoy!

Double Chocolate Cupcake:
2 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup Hershey's Cocoa
1 1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
2 Eggs
1/2 cup Vegetable Oil
1 cup Boiling Water
1 3/4 cup All-Purpose Flour
1 1/2 tsp. Baking Powder
1 tsp. Salt
2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
1 bag Milk Chocolate Chips (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F . Line 12 muffin tins with cupcake liners.

Stir together flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl and set aside.
In a stand mixer, combine eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla; beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water. Slowly add in dry ingredients to wet and mix until just combined (batter will be thin). Mix in chocolate chips.
Scoop batter into muffin tins filling about 2/3 of the way full. (I also like to drop 4-5 chocolate chips on top before I put them in the oven.)
Bake for 22-25 minutes or until wooden toothpick comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes and remove from pans.

Peanut Butter Buttercream:
16 tbsp. Unsalted Butter, room temperature
1 cup smooth Peanut Butter
1 1/2 cups Powdered Sugar
2 pinches Table Salt
1 tbsp. Vanilla Extract
2 tbsp. Heavy Cream  

In a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat butter and peanut butter at medium speed until smooth. Slowly add powdered sugar and salt and continue to beat at medium-low speed until most of the sugar is moistened. Scrape down sides and mix well. Add vanilla and heavy cream and mix until correct consistency.

This is what my finished cupcakes looked like after all was said and done. They were absolutely sinful and divine and it wasn't until after I had already devoured two of them that I thought about the calories. But I'm a college student. I'm only going to have this metabolism once, right?


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