These are my new favorite cupcakes. They are AWESOME! I love the light flavor – you wouldn’t know there is coffee in them if you weren’t told, and the white chocolate whipped cream icing is the best icing I’ve ever had, hands down! Of the three treats I made for Marshall’s party, I think the most popular was the cheesecake, but I don’t care – I made them all, and I declare these cupcakes the star of the show!
Let’s go ahead with the recipe, and I’ll include my commentary throughout. Exciting, I know!
White Chocolate Mocha Cupcakes by Annie’s Eats
Yield: lots. 24+
–5oz semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
-2 cups cake flour (Publix did not have cake flour, so I used 2 cups regular all-purpose flour, minus 4 tablespoons. I replaced those 4 tablespoons with corn starch, and sift it together with the flour. I found this solution – where else? – online. I guess it worked. I’ve never used cake flour before, so I don’t really have a good reference point for what I was trying to accomplish)
-1/2 tsp salt
-1/2 cup sour cream
–5 tbsps cocoa powder
–2 1/2 tsp baking soda
–2 tsp vanilla extract
–1 1/2 cups hot coffee (I recommend making your coffee very strong for this purpose. I used our regular drinking-strength coffee and you couldn’t really taste the coffee in the cupcakes at all. So be bold!)
-12 tbsps unsalted butter, softened
-1 1/4 cups plus 2 tbsps brown sugar (I used light brown. Not sure if this is what the recipe writer intended.)
Whipped Cream Icing Ingredients:
-6 oz white chocolate, finely chopped
-1 1/2 cups cold heavy whipping cream
Decorative Doodle Ingredients:
-4 oz chocolate (I used bittersweet the first time and semisweet the second. Not a huge difference, but I think I prefer the bittersweet)
–chocolate sprinkles (I did not use sprinkles either time. You won’t miss ’em if you don’t have ’em!)
-To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350°. Line two cupcake pans with paper liners. (I only used half the batter the first time I made these for Marshall’s party, and I refrigerated the rest. I did not use all of it because I ran out of cupcake liners. Then I did some googling the next day and discovered how easy it is to make your own cupcake liners with parchment paper, so I used the remaining batter on Monday to make a bunch of mini cupcakes with homemade liners. To make your own liners, just cut parchment paper in either 4″ squares for mini cupcakes, or 6 inch squares for normal sized. Then stuff ’em into the cupcake pan and smoosh ’em into the bottom edges until they’re good and creased. Fill with cupcake batter and voila! You look like a pro DIYer.)
-In a double boiler, melt the chocolate for the cupcakes. Let it cool slightly. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour and salt. In another bowl, whisk together the sour cream, cocoa powder and baking soda. Mix to form a paste and then slowly whisk in the coffee. In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs and vanilla. (Notice all the whisking and sifting going on in this recipe. It’s so worth it – these cupcakes turned out with an awesome light and delicate texture.)
-In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Slowly add the egg adn vanilla mixture and beat until combined. Add the melted chocolate and beat well. Add the flour mixture, alternating with the liquid mixture, beating just until all ingredients are incorporated.
-Divide the batter evenly between the cupcake liners. Bake 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pans 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
-To make the white chocolate whipped cream, place the chopped white chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Melt, stirring occasionally. (I cheated and put mine in the microwave and cooked it at 30 second intervals until it was melted. Easy peasy.) When the chocolate is almost melted, bring 1/2 cup of the cream to a boil. Once the chocolate is fully melted, transfer the bowl to a counter, pour in the hot cream and let it sit for one minute. Then stir gently with a spatula until the chocolate is smooth. Let the chocolate sit until it reaches room temperature – the chocolate can’t be the least bit warm when it is added to the whipped cream. (I cooled mine in the fridge.)
–In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the remaining 1 cup cream only until it holds the softest peaks. (I do not have a stand mixer, nor whisk attachments. I made the mistake of using my hand mixer with the regular mixer thingies…and the second time I made this, I overdid it and my whipped cream seperated. It could not be saved and had to be thrown away and I had to run to the grocery store and buy a can of whipped cream icing and a new bar of white chocolate. I melted the chocolate and mixed it into the canned icing. It was pretty good, but nowhere near as heavenly as the homemade stuff. So my point here is that if you don’t have a mixer with a whisk attachment, take the time to whisk it by hand instead. It will be so worth it.)
-With the mixer on high speed, add the white chocolate all at once and continue to beat just until the mixture holds firm peaks. Transfer the cream to a bowl, and press a piece of plastic wrap gently against the surface and refrigerate for at least 2 hours (I had to add about 1/2 cup of powdered sugar to my good batch to make it a little firmer. This might be because I beat it to death with my hand mixer…I’m not sure).
-While the cream is setting, make the chocolate decorations. Spread a piece of wax paper on a cookie sheet. Place the chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl and microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until completely melted. Allow the chocolate to cool for several minutes (like, 15 or so), then transfer the melted chocolate to a plastic bag with the corner cut off. Carefully squeeze the melted chocolate onto the wax paper in the desired shape. Put cookie sheet in the freezer and allow the chocolate to set.
-Frost the cupcakes with the now set white chocolate whipped cream, top with chocolate sprinkles (or not), and garnish with the chocolate decorations. Store in the refrigerator but serve at room temperature for best flavor.
And one more for good measure:
Make these today and be a total rock star to whoever it is that you feed. Yes, they are THAT good!
Running so I can eat more mocha cupcakes,