Monday, June 9, 2014

Chocolate Cupcakes

My daughter wanted chocolate cupcakes for her birthday party, back in April, for her friends to decorate at her party.   (Her friends LOVED it- BTW; they are 12.  My son had the same activity for his party (turning 10) a month later, and all of his friends absolutely LOVED it as well, lol!)  Anyway, I was already starting to clean out my pantry at that point, so I needed a recipe with ingredients I had on hand, and this fit the bill.  It's a simple recipe, and easy to put together.  
Chocolate Cupcakes
adapted from Mel's Kitchen Cafe
Makes 24-30 cupcakes, depending on how full you make them

1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon cocoa powder, Dutch-process or regular unsweetened
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon hot water
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 sticks plus 1 tablespoon (17 tablespoons total) butter, at room temperature
1 2/3 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup sour cream

1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 standard cupcake pans with paper liners. In a glass liquid measuring cup, combine the cocoa powder and hot water and whisk until smooth. In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

2.  In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the butter and sugar. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is smooth and the butter is completely melted. Transfer the mixture to the bowl of an electric mixer (or to a stand-alone bowl, using a handheld electric mixer) and beat on medium-low speed until the mixture is cool, about 4-5 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Blend in the vanilla and then the cocoa mixture until smooth. With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture in three additions alternating with the sour cream, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients and mixing each addition just until incorporated. 

3.  Divide the batter evenly between the prepared liners, filling no more than 2/3 full. If you live at a high altitude or have had overflowing cupcakes in the past, err on the side of filling the liner of one cupcake 1/2 full and baking it alone first to judge how the cupcake will rise in the oven. Bake the cupcakes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 12-18 minutes. Remove the cupcakes to a wire rack to cool completely.

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