Danny has been working especially long hours lately; putting in overtime at the hospitals, training a new batch of medical students and studying for his final qualifying exam in May. So yesterday, while watching an old episode of Cake Boss, I was inspired to whip up my own batch of cupcakes as a little treat for us to enjoy.
I consider myself to be a fairly decent baker, but surprisingly, I had never actually made cupcakes from scratch. Pies, cakes, cookies, scones... no problem... but never cupcakes. I picked a very moist chocolate cupcake recipe (because we both love chocolate) and I did a quick search through my cupboards to ensure I had the correct ingredients on hand. I did! Making the batter seemed pretty easy...sift this, mix that, add a few more things and presto!
As I was about to pour the batter into the tins, I realized I was completely out of liners. I figured since I've made many many batches of muffins without using liners I'd just spray the tins with some cooking oil as I normally do, and I'd be fine.
Oh, was I wrong.
The cupcakes, although beautifully puffed and crispy on the edges were so very soft throughout. As soon as I tried to lift one out of the pan it completely fell apart in my hands. Three failed attempts later I realized I had a problem. Now what?
I hate failing at anything... especially things that I consider myself to be fairly proficient with and this was a real blow to the old ego. Plus, Danny was supposed to arrive at any minute and I didn't want him to walk right into my disaster zone. I had to get creative, and quickly.
Back into the cupboards I went searching. I didn't even know what I was searching for specifically but I was getting desperate. Then, next to the Bailey's Irish Creme, it struck me... martini glasses!
I scooped up the half broken cupcake bottoms and pressed them into the glass. Then I tried to find the cupcakes tops that were mostly intact and positioned those on top. I scooped some icy mint icing and spread it on top. Not half-bad and I could serve it with a spoon!
When D arrived home he was completely impressed with culinary abilities (ha!) and couldn't wait to dig into the glass.
- Always have baking liners on hand
- Don't panic when your cupcakes crumble
- Whenever in trouble, the solution is usually near the Baileys ;)
Extra Moist Chocolate Cupcakes
1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup hot water
3/4 cup milk
2 large eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 325'C
Sift the flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt into the bowl of a heavy mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; add sugar.
Turn the mixer on low and add, in order, water, milk, eggs, oil and vanilla. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat on medium, briefly, to achieve a smooth batter.
Scoop the batter into muffin tins lined with paper baking cups; each cup should be about half-full; slide the tins onto a baking sheet and bake about 30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean.
Cool completely before frosting.
For the frosting I just whipped up a simple butter and icing sugar frosting. I added two drops of peppermint extract and two drops of blue colouring for flavour and colour. I didn't use a recipe so don't have the exact measurements on hand.