Friday, April 10, 2009

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Chocolate Whiskey Cupcakes

I made chocolate cupcakes today. After the day I had yesterday I was looking forward to spending some time in the kitchen baking something chocolaty. I heard back from the vet and it turns out Perla doesn't have rat poisoning (thank God) but it also turns out that the vet has no idea what's going on with her. The only thing we do know is that her platelet levels are really, really low. She's on steroids now and the hope is that the medication will stop her immune system from attacking her platelets. It seems like it's going to be a lot of waiting and seeing. Perla has a follow up appointment on Monday so I am hoping that her platelet levels look better by then. There's not much I can other than stay positive, so thanks for all your positive vibes :)

These cupcakes were quick and easy to make. You can make the whiskey sauce and the frosting while the cupcakes bake. Assembly is quick too and once everything is together, the cupcake is SWEET. It's a little too sweet for my taste but I prefer desserts that are more on the bitter side. I'm sure Alex will love these. My favorite part of the cupcake was the whiskey sauce. I think this is going to be my go-to caramel sauce from now on. The sauce has such a great smoky flavor. I think what made the cupcake too sweet for me was the least it was a pretty cupcake!

Chocolate Cupcakes
Source: Jill O'Connor's Sticky, Chewy, Messy, Gooey

¾ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup packed brown sugar
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 Tbsp cocoa powder
½ tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
½ cup boiling water
2.5 Tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
½ tsp pure vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 6 cupcake cavities with paper cupcake liners.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugars, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. In a 2-cup measuring cup combine the boiling water, oil, vinegar, and vanilla. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the liquid ingredients. Stir together until smooth.

Fill each cupcake cavity ¾ full. Bake until cupcakes are puffed and firm, about 25 minutes. Remove from oven and transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.

Once cooled, carve a hole in the center of the cupcake and fill with whiskey sauce. Top the hole with the carved out cupcake top.
Whiskey Caramel Sauce
Source: Jill O'Connor's Sticky, Chewy, Messy, Gooey

1 cup granulated sugar
¼ cup whiskey
½ tsp lemon juice
1 cup heavy cream
¼ tsp salt
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract

Combine the sugar, whiskey, and lemon juice in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Cook, gently swirling the pan occasionally, until the sugar dissolves and starts to turn color. Increase the heat to high and boil until the syrup turns a deep amber color, 4 to 5 minutes. Watch carefully, as it can burn quickly.

Immediately remove the pan from the heat and pour in the cream and salt. Use a long-handled wooden spoon to carefully stir in the cream, as caramel has a tendency to hiss and splash as the cold cream hits it. Place the pan over low heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the cream thickens, 5 to 7 minutes. The mixture should be the consistency of very thick cream. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

Let the boiling sauce cool until it is just warm before serving. To store, cover and refrigerate for up to 1 week. To reheat the sauce, microwave, uncovered, for about 1 minute.
Vanilla-Whiskey Buttercream
Source: Allysa Torey's More from Magnolia: Recipes from the World-Famous Bakery

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 to 3 cups confectioners' sugar
2 Tbsp milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp whiskey

Place the butter in a large mixing bowl. Add 1 cup of the sugar and then the milk, vanilla, and whiskey. On the medium speed of an electric mixer, beat until smooth and creamy, about 3 to 5 minutes. Gradually add the remaining sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, beating well after each addition (about 2 minutes), until the icing is thick enough to be of good spreading consistency. Icing can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Unwrapped. Split. Oozing.


Eliana said...

What a lovely looking cupcakes. Baking can be such a great distraction.

pinkstripes said...

YUM. They look wonderful. I'm glad your dog didn't ingest rat poison, but it would be nice to know what's wrong. I hope she gets well soon.

Alexandria said...

Pretty cupcakes! Most importantly, what whiskey did you use :P

Elyse said...

Here's some more good vibes for Perla! Hang in there!! Your cupcakes look totally fabulous, and that whiskey buttercream..oh man, and the sauce, too!! Ee, I want to just eat the frosting and sauce by the spoonful--although, on a delicious chocolate cupcake works for me!

Mermaid Sweets said...

Those cupcakes look amazing, and I hope Perla is fine.

Stephanie said...

Baking IS a great distraction. I think baking put me in a better mood and that made Perla feel better too.