Tuesday, September 08, 2009

What's in a name?

My lack of interest in food and food related anything continues. It upsets me - I love my blog and I love all of you - but I just can't gather up enthusiasm for anything food. We are eating incredibly boring, completely not worth writing about food 99% of the time. But occasionally I come across a recipe that I just HAVE to try. Like this one from Ina.

We were watching a Barefoot Contessa episode I'd recorded and Ina was testing, among other things, 2 chocolate cupcake recipes, one with coffee in the batter and icing, and one without coffee. I'm not a fan of chocolate cake, but something snapped in my head and I googled the recipe so I could add the ingredients needed to my shopping list.

First off, Sara is once again reminded that sizes differ from place to place. This recipe calls for chocolate syrup and I just assumed that the can I found at the grocery store would be the same size used in the recipe. It wasn't until I had the butter and sugar creaming that I discovered via a ml to oz converter online that I only had half the amount of syrup needed. So after placing my hands on my belly to cover the baby's ears (to muffle the curse words I uttered), we halved the butter/sugar mixture and made a half batch of cupcakes instead.

Second, I learned that not all muffin cups are created equal. We were now making 6 cupcakes, but had way too much batter. Is there no consistency in the world????? We ended up with 10 cupcakes, tossed them in the oven and went to clean the chocolate batter off the living room furniture (I blame the baby).
After letting the cupcakes cool completely I made the icing - cream, chocolate and more instant coffee. I threw in a pinch of salt too. The icing is insanely fabulous - I didn't measure the coffee, just tossed some in, so it was more coffee-heavy than it should have been. I could have eaten it with a spoon. I still might - there's some left over.

These cupcakes - well, they're not cupcakes. For me, a cupcake is light and airy. These are dense and fudge-y - a fudgecake! Very nice, but mis-named, in my opinion.

Ina Garten's Chocolate Ganache Cupcake

1/4 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1 (16-ounce) can Hershey's chocolate syrup
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules

1/2 cup heavy cream
8 oz chocolate chips
1/2 tsp instant coffee granules
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a muffin pan with paper liners.
Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, 1 at a time. Mix in the chocolate syrup and vanilla. Add the flour and coffee granules and mix until just combined. Don't overbeat, or the cupcakes will be tough.
Scoop the batter into the muffin cups and bake for 30 minutes, or until just set in the middle. Don't overbake! Let cool thoroughly in the muffin pan.
For the ganache, cook the heavy cream, chocolate chips, and instant coffee in the top of a double boiler over simmering water until smooth and warm, stirring occasionally.
Dip the tops of the cupcakes into the ganache. Do not refrigerate.


NKP said...

I love Ina's recipes.
When I spent hours lined up to meet her at the Manulife Center they kept feeding us cupcakes from her recipes. Yum!

Karen Baking Soda said...

oh the way they look! The gloss, the chocolate, coffee... Can you see me swoon?

Sara said...

Natashya - did you really meet her!?!? How exciting.

B - they are pretty aren't they? And of course delicious.

Valerie Harrison (bellini) said...

No matter what we want to call them they sound delicious.

White Toast with Butter said...

I made these a couple years ago for a friend's birthday - the kids hated them because they weren't like mom makes "from a box" but my husband and three year old at the time loved them - they are incredible. America make your kids a real homemade cupcake before they are scarred for life!

breadchick said...

OH OH OH! I remember when you made these while we were chatting online. They look even better tonight than they did that night and believe me when I said I wanted to lick the screen that night.

Deborah said...

I don't care what they're supposed to be called or what you had to do to get them - these look amazing! And babies love chocolate, so you're all happy, right? >G<

Anonymous said...


Karine said...

These cupcakes sound delicious! MmM chocolate... thanks for sharing your recipe!

Lien said...

OK I have to wipe my laptop now, thanks very much... I drooled all over the place. They looks so good, and would go with my cappuccino very nicely right now!

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