Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with Caramel Buttercream

We interrupt our regular, no post (normally) on Wednesday schedule for a very important occasion: a par-tay.

Why? Because it's Craft, Bake, Sew, Create's one year birthday, that's why! Can you think of a better reason to eat chocolate cake and loads of frosting? Didn't think so.

As you can see, this ole' blog got a nice makeover for it's birthday. The third one, to be precise. What can I say, it likes to be beautiful.

I don't know if I could have picked a better celebratory cake for the blog's birthday! This chocolate cake is another one of my favorite chocolate cake recipes, and this homemade, completely from scratch caramel buttercream is nothing short of amazing. Chocolate and caramel have always been two of my favorite flavors, and these cupcakes are no exception of that!

Go ahead and take a look back on some of the posts I've written over the year. Do you have a favorite? Is there something you'd like me to try in the next year? I'd love to hear any of your ideas!

And while you do that, why don't you snack on some of these cupcakes?

Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with Caramel Buttercream
{recipe adapted from Food Network}

3/4 cup + 2 T. all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup + 2 T. dark chocolate cocoa powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 egg, at room temperature
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup freshly brewed hot coffee

Preheat the oven to 350ยบ.  Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. 

In another bowl, combine the buttermilk, oil, egg, and vanilla. Slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry. Add the coffee and stir just until combined, making sure to scrape up all the ingredients from the bottom and sides of the bowl.

Scoop a scant 1/4 cup of batter into each liner. (A scant cup means that it's not filled all the way to the top. So, scoop the batter into a 1/4 cup measuring utensil, but don't fill it quite all the way to the brim.) 

Bake for 14-16 minutes. The cake is done when it bounces back when touched with your finger.

Let cool completely and then frost.

Makes 12 (1 dozen) cupcakes.

Caramel Buttercream

1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, softened
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 T. heavy cream

In a mixing bowl, cream together the caramel, butter, and powdered sugar. Add in the cream. Beat with a mixer for 1-2 minutes...unti light and fluffy. Pipe or spread onto the cupcakes. Store any extra frosting in the refrigerator.

Recipe Notes:
1. Don't have buttermilk on hand? I didn't either! What I did was make my own by using milk and lemon juice. All you have to do is measure out 1/2 cup of milk, take out about 1 tsp. of it, and substitute the amount you removed with 1 tsp. of lemon juice. Mix together, and let it sit for a minute or two...until it's slightly thickened.
2. This cake is very moist, so moist that it's almost very delicate! I would not recommend piling on as much frosting as I did in the pictures unless you REALLY love frosting. The cake is very light, and moist like I said before, so that much frosting to cake ratio is almost too much. Just a suggestion, but if you make them they are your cupcakes, so you can do as you please :)

Now, a little more about the new look. Almost everything is the same, just with a few layout/where everything is located differences. You may notice that I removed the tab that links to information about ordering cupcakes and cookies. I feel like it wasn't used much, and if anyone is interested in an order they either (1) know me and talk to me in person or already have my email or (2) can email me if they're interested on it as I can just as easily email them the information they'd need to know.

I've updated the craft and recipe indexes; I was REALLY behind on those but plan on consistently updating them now! I'm also planning on adding a list of my favorite recipes from the blog under the "recipe index" tab. Be on the lookout for that in the next couple of days, as well!

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