So, this was a random idea I got yesterday because, well, who doesn't love Peppermint Hot Chocolate? It's totally the best thing about winter. I wondered if I could make it into a cupcake and I DID! This cupcake is delicious, if I do say so myself. And with marshmallow frosting, they look really pretty, too!

Ingredients and Directions:

Hot Chocolate Cupcake
Yield: 1 dozen
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups flour
2 T cocoa powder
1 3/4 tsp baking powder
2 eggs
1/2 cup hot chocolate
2 tsp. vanilla

1) Preheat oven to 350°. Brew hot chocolate, using MILK instead of water. I used good ol' Swiss Miss. Set hot chocolate aside and let cool. Set cupcake liners in pan.
2) In a large bowl, cream together sugar and butter until light and fluffy.
3) In a separate bowl, sift the flour, cocoa powder, and baking powder together.
4) Add eggs to sugar & butter mixture, one at a time.
5) Add vanilla.
6) Slowly add dry ingredients to the wet until well combined.
7) Stir in 1/2 cup of the hot chocolate. Drink the rest. ;-) (For a richer cupcake, use a rich/dark chocolate hot cocoa mix).
8) Fill cupcake liners about 2/3 full. Bake at 350° 18-22 minutes, until the center spring back when lightly pressed.

9) Move to wire wrack to cool completely.

(After tasting the cupcake fully assembled, I think the chocolate needs to be amped up a little bit. I'll have to play with cocoa powder and hot chocolate to see what works. Or maybe even some melted chocolate.)

Peppermint Filling
The filling is a basic buttercream, substituting peppermint extract for vanilla. If you have a recipe you like, you can use that. Here's mine.
4 T unsalted butter, room temp.
4 T shortening
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. peppermint extract
1-2 T milk (if needed)
10-12 peppermint candies, crushed (optional)

1) Cream together the butter and shortening until well combined.
2) Slowly add the powdered sugar (I usually do it 1/2 cup at a time).
3) Add peppermint extract.
4) If the filling is too thick, add a little milk.
5) If desired, mix in the crushed peppermint candies.

6) Fill cupcakes.

(Sadly, I don't have a proper piping bag and tips so I had to do the cut open and fill with a spoon method.)

Marshmallow Frosting
Having never attempted this before, I went hunting for a recipe that looked fairly simple and delicious. The one I ended up using can be found at The Cake Duchess website. It is DELICIOUS. Very light and fluffy and definitely tastes like marshmallow.

If you have a kitchen torch, you can lightly toast the frosting after it's been piped on. This is my husband using his big ass propane torch after I made an off-handed comment about it. LOL

Ta da! You have a delicious cupcake that is very messy to eat. :-)
Mods, first post here. I think I did the tags right, but please let me know if I need to change anything.
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