Recipe Update

I ended up making those White Chocolate Caramel Cupcakes again… 8 am Saturday morning and there I am in my kitchen baking for Steph’s 30th birthday… and true to my word in my blog on Friday night – I did twist up the original recipe.

This time I included pecans – 1/3 c. of pecans were added to the batter before spooning it into the muffin tins.

And, I only made 12 – these ones were larger than Friday’s cupcakes.

Also, instead of the Milk Chocolate Butter Cream Icing I made a Maple Butter Cream Icing. Topped with pecan halves – these little treats were a real hit!

Maple Butter Cream Icing
ingredients:
3 tbsp butter, room temperature
1 1/4 c. powdered sugar
4 – 5 tbsp maple syrup
12 x pecan halves

Beat the butter, maple syrup and the sugar together in a bowl until pale and fluffy.
The original recipe called for 3 tbsp maple syrup – so you can start with that and then adjust according to your taste buds and what you feel is appropriate for the cupcake.
I piped the icing on top of the cupcakes and then topped them each with a pecan half.

Happy Birthday Steph!

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my version of a peanut butter cup… only it’s a cake

So Mel’s favourite things are chocolate and peanut butter. All of her friends know that combining those two flavours together will always mean a successful treat. As you know, last weekend was Mel’s birthday weekend – and so not only did I make those brazil nut cookies, but I also attempted my very first roulade. Yep, I baked a cake, rolled it up, unrolled it and filled it with a delightful filling and rolled it back up. Then I covered it in chocolate. Sounds difficult, but it really wasn’t . I don’t recommend making this more than a day in advance – the cake is so thin that it dries out quickly. But I would make this again.

This recipe was inspired by the chocolate-orange roulade from my Party Cakes recipe book. I swapped out the orange for vanilla in the cake batter and totally altered the filling. This cake really was made specifically for Mel.

Chocolate Roulade
ingredients:
1/2 c. self-rising flour
1 tsp b. powder
1/4 c. cocoa powder
1/2 c. ground almonds
5 eggs
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Heat the oven to 375F. Butter a 17 x 11 inch jelly-roll pan (a large cookie sheet that has at least an inch high side). Then line the pan (base and sides) with waxed paper – you need to have some overhang with the paper so that it’s easy to remove the baked cake.

Sift the flour, b. powder and cocoa into a bowl and mix in the ground almonds.

In a large bowl, beat the eggs, sugar and vanilla for 10 minutes with a handheld mixer. The result should be a thick batter that has tripled in volume. Fold in the dry ingredients using a large metal spoon.

Pour the batter into the jelly roll – spread it out evenly, make sure that all the corners are filled and even. Bake for 12 – 15 minutes (depending on your oven… mine took 14 minutes). The cake should be firm to the touch.

Meanwhile, soak a tea towel in cold water and wring it out. Lay it on a clean work surface, place a sheet of waxed paper on top and sprinkle white sugar on top of the wax paper.

Once you remove the cake from the oven, let is cool for 1 minute. Now, turn out the cake onto the sugared wax paper. Peel the wax paper that was lining the cake off (best to remove it in strips so that you can be more gentle with the cake). Now starting at the short side closest to you, start rolling the cake. Only roll the wax paper – keep the damp tea towel on the surface. Set the rolled cake aside and allow to cool completely.

While it’s cooling you can then make the filling :0)

Peanut Butter Tofu Frosting
ingredients:
1 box silken tofu
1/2 c. maple syrup
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
3/4 c. peanut butter

Blend the tofu in a food processor until it becomes very smooth. Add the rest of the ingredients and continue to blend until everything is well combined.

Now – unroll the roulade, discard the wax paper and spread the tofu frosting over the entire cake using a spatula. Roll the cake back up carefully and as tightly as possible and place it on whatever serving plate you are going to use. Set aside.

Almost done… but not quite! Now for the Chocolate Frosting.
ingredients:
3/4 c. dark chocolate chips
1/2 c. unsalted butter, room temperature
1/3 c. powdered sugar

Melt the chocolate in a metal bowl over a simmering pot of water. Allow the melted chocolate to cool for 10 minutes. Beat the butter and the sugar together until smooth – then add the chocolate and combine well. Set the frosting aside for 20 minutes – it needs to firm up a little. Spread the frosting over the roulade with a metal spatula (I don’t have a metal spatula, so I use a large knife and carefully use the metal blade to spread the frosting).

As it sits the frosting will get firmer – almost forming a ganche effect over the roulade. If you want a dessert that impresses people – this is it. :0)

nutella cupcakes… seriously

A few weeks back I spent a Sunday afternoon baking at Deb’s place… and I meant to add this recipe to my blog then, but it seems that life gets in the way of blogging sometimes :0) so without much further ado – here is the recipe for my Nutella filled chocolate cupcakes.

I found this recipe in my cupcakes recipe book by Susannah Blake – her gooey chocolate and hazelnut cupcakes recipe. I thought this could be very interesting (and delicious)…

I made the nutella at home the day before – I figured if I was making “homemade” cupcakes the entire thing might as well be made by me… and I have to say – SUCCESS!! I was very pleased with the result of my nutella. I’ll post that recipe separately since I don’t want this entry to be too long :0)

Chocolate Nutella Cupcakes
ingredients:
1/4 c. bittersweet dark chocolate, chopped
4 tbsp butter, at room temperature
1/2 c. b. sugar
2 eggs
3 tbsp blanched hazelnuts, ground
3/4 c. self-rising flour, sifted
1/2 c. Nutella
3 tbsp blacnhed hazelnuts, toasted and cut into large pieces – for decorating

Preheat the oven to 350F. Spray muffin tin with non-stick spray or line with paper liners.

To blanch the hazelnuts – heat them in a pan over medium heat. Remove from heat after a few minutes (they should get quite hot and smell nutty) and place on top of a clean hand towel. Fold the towel in half so that the nuts are covered and rub well. The skin from the hazelnuts should rub off. Don’t worry if some of the skin doesn’t rub off.

Melt the chocolate in a metal bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Once all the chocolate is melted, set it aside and prepare the rest of the batter.

Beat the butter and sugar together so that they become fluffy. Beat in the eggs – one at a time. Stir in the ground hazelnuts (a food processor will grind the hazelnuts well). Then add the flour to the mixture and fold in. Finally add the melted chocolate to the batter.

Drop 1/2 heaped tbsp of the mixture into each muffin cup, flatten a little to make an indentation in the centre of each cupcake. Fill that indentation with a tsp of Nutella. Top all cupcakes with the remainder of the batter.

Bake for about 18 minutes (I start with 15 minutes). The cupcakes should spring back when gently pressed. Transfer to a wire rack and allow to cool.

While they cool you can mix up a Chocolate frosting. I decided to use my Tofu Chocolate Frosting – see my Chocolate Strawberry torte with Tofu recipe from February for the recipe.

Once the cupcakes are cooled, spread the frosting over each individual one and then arrange the hazelnuts that you saved for decorating.

Deb, Julie and I really enjoyed them that afternoon. And if you wanted to sweeten it up a little more – use milk chocolate instead. I used dark chocolate for everything (Nutella, batter and frosting) so it certainly made it a dark chocolate lovers delight! Enjoy.