Death by Chocolate Cupcakes

Death by Chocolate Cupcakes

Hello Everyone! It’f finally November which means, other than a new theme on the blog as usual, it is also my birthday month! I’ll be 25 in exactly a week and I’ve got a few get-togethers planned with family, friends, and colleagues. I actually baked these cupcakes last year for my Manager’s birthday. The week before her birthday I shared the leftover red velvet cupcakes that I had baked for halloween with my colleagues. When I offered her the cupcakes, she told me that she didn’t like red velvet, and that chocolate was more her thing. So, my colleagues told me that I should bake her some chocolate cupcakes for her birthday. I’m not sure if she liked them, but my colleagues and I definitely did!

Death by Chocolate Cupcakes

These cupcakes  are not overly sweet, but rather deep and intense in pure chocolate flavour. They are dark chocolate cupcakes with a thick dark chocolate frosting on top and sprinkled with dark chocolate shavings. The mixture of melted chocolate and cocoa powder to make these cupcakes ultra fudgey, rich, and moist. Are you salivating yet? Well, if you aren’t then please go away – if you can’t salivate over fudgey dark chocolate cupcakes then we cannot be friends *cheeky grin*

Today is actually her birthday, and we tried to surprise her today which ended up being a massive fail. Well, it’s hard to surprise someone who already expects a surprise – my colleague was right, we should’ve just not surprised her as that would’ve been the ultimate surprise. She’ll probably get mad at us for forgetting, but then again she’ll definitely know that we didn’t forget and still expect a surprise in some way or another. Maybe that will be the plan for next year?

Anyway, Please take the time to check out the original recipe over on Sally’s Baking Addiction. Anyway, I don’t want to take you guys on a massive tangent so let’s move on to the recipe for tonight!

Death by Chocolate Cupcakes Ingredients

PREP TIME 12 MINS | COOKING TIME 18 MINS | SERVES 12 CUPCAKES

INGREDIENTS

For the dark chocolate cupcakes

  • 3/4 cup (95g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk*
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 115g unsalted butter
  • 60g semi-sweet baking chocolate
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature**
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt

For the dark chocolate frosting

  • 2 & 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 95ml heavy cream
  • 90g unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Optional

  • Semi-sweet chocolate chips or shaved dark chocolate for decoration

*Room temperature eggs are required for this recipe. To bring eggs to room temperature quickly, put them in a glass of warm water for 5-10 minutes.

**Buttermilk is required for this recipe. If you do not have buttermilk, make your own by mixing 2 teaspoons white vinegar or lemon juice with 1/2 cup milk. Stir and let sit for 5 minutes.

METHOD

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C (350F or gas mark 4). Line a 12-cup cupcake/muffin pan with cupcake liners and set aside.
  2. For the cupcakes: Melt the butter and chocolate together in the microwave at 30-second intervals, stirring between each time until smooth. Once smooth, set aside to slightly cool. You may also melt the butter and chocolate over low heat on the stovetop.
  3. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the cocoa powder, flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together, and then set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla together until smooth. Then, add in the cooled butter and chocolate mixture, whisking until smooth. Add half of the flour mixture, then half of the buttermilk. Repeat until everything is added, stirring until just combined; be careful to not over mix otherwise the batter will be very thick like pudding. Fill the cupcake liners about 2/3 of the way full with batter.
  5. Bake for 18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre of the cupcake comes out clean. Allow to cool completely before frosting.
  6. For the frosting: Sift the confectioners’ sugar and cocoa powder together to assure there are no lumps, and then set aside.
  7. With a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy – about 2 minutes. Gradually add the sifted sugar and cocoa powder mixture alternately with the heavy cream and vanilla extract. Beat on low speed after each addition. Once all added, beat on high speed until creamy and combined for at least 2 minutes. Add a pinch of salt if frosting is too sweet.
  8. Frost the cooled cupcakes and top with chocolate chips or shaved dark chocolate as desired. Cupcakes stay fresh at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 4 days. Store covered in the refrigerator is desired for up to 1 week.
  9. Share and enjoy amongst family and friends!

Death by Chocolate Cupcakes

Death by Chocolate Cupcakes

BON APPÉTIT

– Ally xx

myTaste.com

Halloween Special: Creepy Broken Glass Cupcakes!

Halloween Special: Creepy Broken Glass Cupcakes!

Halloween Special: Creepy Broken Glass Cupcakes!

Hello Everyone! Where do I even begin? Well, how about I start off by wishing everyone a Happy Halloween! So one day, probably about a few weeks ago, I was browsing through my Reader page on WordPress and going through some of the recipes of other bloggers/writers that I follow. I came across a recipe over at Easy Baked which, if I can recall, were for some sort of cupcakes all decked up for Halloween. I really loved the bright purple, orange, and green colours that Ruthanne used to decorated her Halloween-inspired baked goodies. It was from there that I followed a link to her Creepy Broken Glass Cupcakes and I knew from that very moment that I had to tackle that recipe.

I haven’t seen anything quite like that before, and I thought it would be a nice, and fun baking activity on a Sunday afternoon (yes, I actually baked this last Sunday only because I knew I would have time to do so during the week leading up to Halloween, nor on Halloween Day). Also, Ruthanne notes that this is not an original idea of hers as she has seen many examples of these cupcakes online, but rather she made it her goal to create this recipe in the easiest way possible with fewer steps.

Halloween Special: Creepy Broken Glass Cupcakes!

Anyway, this recipe gave me a bit of a headache – well, just the broken glass candy part, and a little bit of the red velvet cupcake as well. Let’s just say that with the red velvet, it did not rise as I had wanted it to or hoped, and it wasn’t very red because of the lack of colouring (I used less because my bottle of red ran out). I had actually attempted to make this recipe 2 weeks ago, but because I was so defeated and tired by the end of the afternoon, I gave up and decided to try it out again the following weekend. At least when I tried that week, I managed to get 50% of the recipe done – the frosting and edible blood. I just kept them in the fridge until the following week when I rebaked my muffins and gave the broken glass candy another go (still was not perfect, but made do with what I had).

Basically, with the glass candy, I couldn’t get the sugar to harden – as in it was mushy as still syrup-like. Apparently, as I read in the comments section of Ruthanne’s blog, another person had the same problem and it was purely because the sugar wasn’t cooked for long enough. So make sure that if you want to try this recipe out, cook it just enough so that you won’t get a mushy mess! But obviously not for too long as it will turn amber in colour which, in this case, is not what you want.

Halloween Special: Creepy Broken Glass Cupcakes! Ingredients

PREP TIME 20 MINS | COOKING TIME 25 MINS | SERVES 12 CUPCAKES

INGREDIENTS

For the cupcake batter

  • 185g butter, at room temperature, plus extra melted, to grease
  • 125ml buttermilk
  • 2 large free range eggs
  • 2/3 cup caster sugar
  • 1/2 cup self-raising flour, sifted
  • 1/4 cup plain flour, sifted
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 2 tbsp red food colouring
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda

For the cream cheese frosting

  • 250g cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 60g butter, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup icing sugar, sifted
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract

For the ‘broken glass’

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 tsp clear food flavouring (I used lychee)

For the edible ‘blood’

  • 1 can (395g) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 tbsp red food colouring
  • 1 tsp clear flavouring (I used lychee)
  • Black food colouring

Halloween Special: Creepy Broken Glass Cupcakes!

Halloween Special: Creepy Broken Glass Cupcakes!

METHOD

A tip before starting off: Make the decorations first, the candy glass and edible blood, as you can keep them in the fridge until just before decorating your cupcakes for your party. They can both keep for several days so you can definitely make them ahead of time.

  1. Broken Glass Candy
    • Cover a baking tray with wax paper and grease it liberally with cooking oil spray, or alternatively you can grease it with some butter if cooking spray is not readily available in your pantry.
    • Place the granulated sugar and corn syrup into a microwave safe bowl and mix them together. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap microwave on high for about 3 minutes. Remove from the microwave and CAREFULLY (beware of the hot steam!) remove the plastic wrap. Stir well and cover again with fresh plastic wrap. Microwave again for another 3 minutes, but check the mixture after about 2 minutes just to make sure that it hasn’t coloured – if you cook the sugar/syrup mixture for too long, it will be amber in colour instead of a nice clear glass you want.
    • CAREFULLY remove the bowl from the microwave and CAREFULLY remove the plastic wrap. The mixture will be very hot and sticky so be cautious as to not touch any of the hot candy! Pour the mixture over the greased wax paper and allow it to sit and harden completely (will take a couple of hours).
    • When the candy has hardened, tap a knife into the ‘glass’ to break it into sharp pieces (do be careful at this point because the pieces are actually quite sharp themselves!), and push the pieces up off the was paper and onto a plate.
    • The glass candy can be kept in a ziplock bag or an airtight container for about a week. Moisture (including the moisture from the frosting on the cupcakes) will eventually start to break the glass candy down.
  2. Edible Blood
    • In a small bowl, add the sweetened condensed milk and mix in the flavouring and red food colouring (a bit at a time) until you get a brilliant red colour. Add a tiny bit of black as the colour can go a long way! Mix and adjust until you get a nice dark red colour.
    • Spoon the ‘blood’ into a ziplock bag and seal tightly. Keep refrigerated until use.
  3. Red Velvet Cake Mix
    • Preheat oven to 180C (350F or gas mark 4). Line a 12 hole muffin pan with black paper cases.
    • Sift the baking soda, cocoa powder, plain flour, self-raising flour into a medium-sized bowl and set aside.
    • Meanwhile in a large bowl, cream the butter and the sugar using an electric handheld mixer. Mix until pale and creamy. Add the eggs and beat on slow speed, making sure that it’s all blended in. Add the flour mixture into egg mixture and gently fold it in. Finally, add in the buttermilk and red food colouring. Mix together.
    • Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups, filling them 3/4 of the way and bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until cooked through. To check if they are done, insert a toothpick in the centre of the muffin.
    • Once done, remove from the oven and allow to cool down for about 5 minutes, then transfer them out of the muffin pans and onto a wire rack to allow them to cool down completely.
  4. Cream Cheese Frosting
    • Smooth the butter, cream cheese, and vanilla together using an electric handheld mixer. Fold in the icing sugar, and then use the mixer again to beat it until it is light and fluffy.
    • Place the frosting into a ziplock bag and refrigerate until use.
  5. Assembly & Decoration
    • Place some parchment paper on your work surface to protect it from all the red colouring from your edible blood, or alternatively you can use a platter or tray that you will be serving the cupcakes on.
    • Snip off a corner of your ziplock bag of frosting and pipe onto the cooled cupcakes. Press 2 to 3 pieces of the glass candy into the top of each cupcake.
    • Snip off a corner of your ziplock bag of edible blood and drizzle over the top of each cupcake and glass candy, allowing it to drip down the sides of both.
    • Serve the same day after decorating, with plates and forks or else you will have red fingers! Enjoy a bloody delicious dessert and a very Happy Halloween to all my family, friends, and followers!

Cupcakes taste best on the same day, though they may be stored covered tightly at room temperature for 3 days (undecorated) or in the refrigerator for 5 days.

Halloween Special: Creepy Broken Glass Cupcakes!

Once again, a very Happy Bloody Halloween to all my family, friends, and followers! I will be back on Tuesday with a new theme for the month of November so stay tuned!

BON APPÉTIT

– Ally xx

myTaste.com

Graduation Day Lemon Curd Cupcakes

Graduation Day Lemon Curd Cupcakes

Hello Everyone! Today is the day! Today is the day that certifies that I am no longer a student, and I am officially unemployed! Today is the day that I receive a piece of paper worth AUD$110,000 of tuition fees to say that I have completed my 4-year Bachelor of Design degree! Today is Graduation Day!

It’s supposed to rain today – great. I have the last time slot which means that instead of a nice sunny graduation day, it’s gonna be dark and cold, if the rain decides to dawn upon my ceremony. Yesterday I kept sneezing, and I know that when that starts to happen, a fever, and eventually a cough and sore throat will follow. Not much luck today as far as I can see, and it’s only 8:45 in the morning as I am writing this paragraph. The good news is, I feel fine so at least I can stop worrying about getting sick – I just hope that the sun pops out for a while, while it’s still bright out in the afternoon before my ceremony at 6:30pm.

UNSW Graduation Day 2015


UNSW Graduation Day 2015

So anyway, it actually stopped raining when I arrived on campus at around 4:15pm – praise the Lord! The cloud didn’t clear up so it was still grey and gloomy. Oh well, at least we weren’t wet from the rain. It got dark really quick though and therefore photos were not as great 😦 All in all, a fun evening seeing friends, and graduating with fellow design mates; a little nerve-wrecking as I kept thinking that I was going to be THAT ONE student who would trip and fall flat on my face. Thank God I didn’t, and neither did anyone else who graduated tonight.

Graduation Day Lemon Curd Cupcakes

I picked to bake tonight’s recipe mainly because of the colours that represent the University of New South Wales, which is Black and Yellow/Gold. Enjoy!

Graduation Day Lemon Curd Cupcakes Ingredients

PREP TIME 20 MINS | COOKING TIME 18-20 MINS | MAKES 12 CUPCAKES

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 & 1/2 cups plain flour
  • 3/4 cup caster sugar
  • 3/4 cup lemon curd
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 110g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 large free range eggs
  • 1 & 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Icing sugar for dusting
  • Zest of one large lemon

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 180C (350F or gas mark 4). Line a 12 hole muffin pan with paper cases and set aside.
  2. Whisk the plain flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium-sized bowl, and set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the sugar and lemon zest. Rub together with your fingers until fragrant.
  4. Using a hand-held electrical mixer, beat the butter and sugar mixture together until light and fluffy, and lightened in colour (about 8 minutes). Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula in between mixing.
  5. Add the eggs one at at time, beating after each addition. Then add in the vanilla extract.
  6. Add the flour mixture and milk alternately, starting and ending with the flour. Mix until the flour is just incorporated and be careful as to not over mix the batter. Mix in the lemon juice.
  7. Divide batter evenly in prepared cupcake liners, filling each case 2/3 of the way full. Bake the cupcakes for about 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a wire cooling rack and cool completely.
  8. Once the cupcakes have completely cooled down, using a knife, cut out a small hole in the centre of the cupcake, about the size of a dime. Carefully remove the centre piece and set aside.
  9. Fill each hole with about 1 teaspoon of lemon curd and dust with a bit of icing sugar.
  10. Share with family and friends, and enjoy!

Graduation Day Lemon Curd Cupcakes Process

Graduation Day Lemon Curd Cupcakes

BON APPÉTIT

– Ally xx

myTaste.com

Breakfast Muffins: Spiced Carrot

Breakfast Muffins: Spiced Carrot

Hello Everyone! Back with another muffin (borderline cupcake) recipe for you! This week, I decided to whip up some lovely spiced carrot muffins while Jialing made some yummy raspberry and white chocolate muffins with a lemon crumb top. I had a bag of about 400g of baby carrots sitting in the fridge, given to me by my housemate Vidhya before she flew off to South Africa. She was telling me how she went out and bought a lot of food, not realising that she’d be jetting off in a few days for a month. So hence why I got the bag of carrots! Now, for those of you who don’t know me that well, I am actually not a fan of carrots. There’s just something about the taste (raw and/or cooked) that I don’t like. I remember how I’d use to add it to my stir-fry just for the colour. I’d eat a slice or two and I’d just be like, no. So when I got this bag of carrots, I had no idea what I was going to do with them. I wanted to give them to Lydia, but I know for a fact that she also does not like carrots. She only eats them because she knows it’s good for your eyes. But other than that, she tries to avoid eating them too.

Breakfast Muffins: Spiced Carrot

Solution? Spiced Carrot Muffins! At least this way I won’t taste much of the carrot… I hope. And I still even have 3-4 baby carrots lying in my fridge! No clue what to do with them next. In the end I think my Spiced Carrot Muffins turned out to be Spiced Carrot Cake Cupcakes because I decided to top the muffins with a yummy cream cheese frosting (I know, so much cream cheese for the past week – for those of you who didn’t see it, I made a Red Velvet Cheesecake on the weekend for my birthday!) I know, this week I was supposed to make savoury muffins as I was unintentionally alternating between sweet and savoury. I feel like it’s a mix? Remove the cream cheese frosting and you have a sort of savoury muffin? Maybe. Please also check out the original recipe over on Williams-Sonoma. The original recipe uses raisins, and if you know me, another thing I don’t like. So add them if you want to (about half a cup), otherwise, I replaced them with roughly chopped walnuts. I also tweaked up the spices by adding ground allspice, cloves, and nutmeg. Much yumminess indeed!

Breakfast Muffins: Spiced Carrot Ingredients

PREP TIME 15 MINS | COOKING TIME 15-18 MINS | MAKES 12 MUFFINS

INGREDIENTS

For the muffin batter

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 & 1/2 cups carrots, peeled and finely shredded (2 large carrots, or 4-5 baby carrots)
  • 2 large free range eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk or sour cream
  • 2/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, roughly chopped (optional)
  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp salt

For the cream cheese frosting

  • 250g cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 60g butter, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup icing sugar, sifted
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 220C. Line a 12 hole muffin pan with paper cases.
  2. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices into a large bowl and stir together until combined. In another bowl, whisk together the eggs and brown sugar until blended. Whisk in the buttermilk, and then butter.
  3. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and, using a rubber spatula, stir just until evenly moistened. Fold in the carrots and walnuts just until evenly distributed (reserve some for decorating later).
  4. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups, filling them 3/4 of the way full. Bake for about 15 to 18 minutes, or until the muffins are golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Once done remove from the oven and set aside to completely cool down.
  5. Meanwhile, as the muffins bake in the oven, smooth the butter, cream cheese, and vanilla together using an electric handheld mixer. Fold in the icing sugar, and then use the mixer again to beat it until it is light and fluffy. Place the icing mixture into a piping bag (or a regular zip lock bag if you don’t have one in handy like me, and snip off a corner to allow the frosting through). Frost the muffins/cupcakes, and top with some crumbed walnuts and shredded carrots.

Breakfast Muffins: Spiced Carrot

I think I may have gotten Lydia into a dilemma; she now can’t choose between my Banana and Cinnamon Crumb Top Muffins, my Pumpkin and Cheesecake Muffins, and now these babies!

BON APPÉTIT

– Ally xx

myTaste.com