Candy cane chocolate cupcakes with a Christmas surprise inside!
Can you believe this is the last Sweet of the Month for 2015, the year went by to fast! We started off in style with a delicious Meyer Lemon Pound Cake with Cardamom, then breezed through the summer with Raspberry and White Chocolate Mascarpone Tart and then fabulous fall Pecan Pie Bars lead us to today. The pressure’s on, I need to end the year with a splash… time to pull out the big guns… Chocolate Cupcakes!
Who doesn’t love the combination of dark chocolate and mint? Who doesn’t think a candy cane with it’s festive red and green is a perfect symbol of the holidays?
Let’s combine all those perfect things into the perfect dessert that is sooo pretty and has a minty surprise inside!
I love this dark chocolate cupcake recipe, but I can’t take credit for it. Although I gave it a few tweeks, it came to me through my niece Julia from a wedding cake baker in Muskoka, Ontario called Carpe Diem. I’ve tried many recipes for chocolate cupcakes and the big difference with this one is the cake is really light. For me, that means I can pile-on the frosting… yah!
Now I know what you Cupcake Deevas are saying… “she over-filled her cupcakes!” I know, I know, I should only fill the cup to 3/4 so there is no spill-over or ‘muffin top’ on my cupcakes. But I love muffin-top. It’s a small edge that is a bit more crispy, chewy and yummy. For you guys however, do as I say, not as I do… don’t overfill!
This is a photo of how I fill my chocolate cupcakes. I bake them as usual, then I use a devise that looks like a fat syringe (I’m not sure of the name of this device – but you can just use a piping bag with pointed tip). I plunge the filling-stuffed ‘thingy’ into the centre of the cupcake (as shown), wiggle around to make a hole and then I push the plunger until a small drop of filling appears and I know it’s done. Super easy.
A splashy end to a truly SWEET year!
- 2 cups sugar
- 1-3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- ¾ cup cocoa
- 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1-1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup buttermilk*
- 1 tsp vanilla
- ½ cup canola oil
- 1 cup hot water with 2 Tbsp instant coffee crystals disolved into it
- ½ cup crushed candy canes
- 2 cups confectioner’s sugar
- 4 Tbsp canola margarine
- 1 tsp peppermint extract
- 2-4 Tbsp milk
- 2 squares unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled a bit
- ½ cup butter, softened
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 4 cups confectioner’s sugar
- ⅓ cup milk (plus extra if needed)
- Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line a 12-cup muffing tin with cupcake liners.
- In a large bowl, sift together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- In another bowl, mix with an electric mixer the eggs, buttermilk, vanilla, canola oil. Add on water and coffee mixture and mix until very smooth. The batter will seem very runny, but they will be fine.
- Fill cupcake liners ¾ full and bake in preheated oven for 22-27 minutes. Allow to fully cool before filling. *if you don’t have any buttermilk, just use milk and add 2 tsp white vinegar; set aside for 5 minutes to curdle.
- Mix all ingredients in a small bowl. Fill a pastry bag or injection icing tool (as shown) with filling. Insert tip into centre of cupcake, swirling around a bit to make a cavity. Inject with filling until it appears at the surface and cavity is full. Repeat with all cupcakes.
- Melt chocolate in a small bowl in 30 second intervals in the microwave. Let cool a bit. In a large bowl cream butter with electric mixer, mix in cooled chocolate and vanilla. Add confectioner’s sugar and milk, whip until very smooth.
- Frost the top of each filled cupcake with a pastry bag and tip or by hand with a knife. Sprinkle crushed candy canes on top and serve.
Sweet of the Month will be sponsored by the awesome folks at Manitoba Canola Growers. All twelve recipes this year will contain canola oil, with it’s clean neutral flavour and powerful omega-3 fats… yah! Thanks in advance for supporting the great products that support EIEO.