Yes, it's a New Year. And yes, I am trying to focus on a healthier lifestyle. But the Christmas re-cap isn't over yet... So here we go.
I have to apologise.
Just a month ago, I wrote this post.
And now I have to eat my words.
Or my cake :)
Because I have found a recipe, which produces The. Best. Cupcakes. EVER.
And they're chocolate.
I am as shocked as you.
I wasn't looking for it. Wasn't even thinking about it. And it came into my life and changed the way I view the world.
I will never be the same again.
I gave them a Christmas twist with some left over candy canes. I highly recommend that you do the same...
Perfect Chocolate Cupcakes
2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup almond milk (you can use regular milk if desired)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water
Line muffin tin with paper liners. Heat oven to 350*F.
In a large mixing bowl, stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Beat on medium speed for one minute.
Stir in boiling water (the batter will be thin, don’t worry, this is right).
Fill liners 2/3 full with batter. (I usually put the batter into a large measuring cup with a pour spout, and then pour the batter into the liners.)
Bake cupcakes for approximately 22-24 minutes.
Cool completely on wire rack before frosting.
Peppermint Cream Cheese Frosting
1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
Approx 200g cream cheese, at room temperature
4 cups icing sugar
1 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup crushed candy canes*
1 to 3 Tablespoons almond milk (you can use regular milk; or cream if desired)
Place butter in a large mixing bowl and blend slightly. Add cream cheese and blend until combined, about 30 seconds.
Add icing sugar (a little at a time) and blend on low speed until combined. Increase to medium speed and beat until it begins to get fluffy.
Add vanilla and peppermint extract and crushed candy canes*
Slowly add the almond milk, a little bit at a time until desired consistency is met. (Don’t add too much if you want the frosting to stay in place when piped on cupcakes.)
Beat until fluffy, about 1 minute.
*Note: Because it's the Festive Season and I had some candy canes lying around, I smashed them into small pieces and added them to the mix. This added to the peppermint flavour, but meant that I had to use a ziplock bag to pipe the icing, as some of the larger candy cane pieces wouldn't fit through the nozzle of my piping bag...