Monday, October 12, 2009

Heirloom Chocolate Cupcakes

This recipe was featured at a Baptism Brunch I recently had for my baby Finn.  It is a recipe from Finn's Great Great Grandmother Johnson, on his father's side of the family.  My mother-in-law found the recipe and we worked together to bring the cupcakes back to fruition.  The recipe called for sour milk, which we substituted with sour cream, and the original recipe also called for a smaller amount of chocolate than we thought would be best.  We suspect that the baking chocolate squares were larger during her time.  So we doubled the amount of chocolate.  Finally, Ina Garten recommends adding coffee to intensify the flavor chocolate.  So we added a teaspoon of instant coffee.  Result: splendid!  Packed with chocolate flavor without being overly sweet.  Light cake with nice density.

Sour Milk Chocolate Cake from Great Great Grandma Johnson (Modern Day version)

1/2 c butter, room temperature
1 1/2 sugar
1T vanila
3 large eggs, separated
1+ cup sour cream
4 squares unsweetened chocolate, melted
1 t instant coffee or espresso
2 cups cake flour, sifted
1T baking soda
1/2 t salt
1T baking powder

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
2.  Butter and flour cupcake pan
3.  Cream butter and sugar (adding sugar gradually) until the mixture is fluffy.  Add vanilla and slightly beaten egg yolks and mix well.
4.  Add melted chocolate with 1 teaspoon instant coffee or espresso and combine.
5.  Sift dry ingredients together.
6.  Add milk and dry ingredients alternating 3 times, ending with the dry.
7.  Fold in stiffly beaten egg whites.
8.  Bake at 350 degrees F for 25 minutes for 2 layer cakes, or 20 minutes for 24 cupcakes.

Cream Cheese Frosting

8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 c butter, room temperature
2T vanilla
1 lb confectioner's sugar

1.  Beat butter and cream cheese
2.  Add vanilla
3.  Gradually beat in sugar.

This frosting recipe is the perfect amount for 24 cupcakes.

I used Royal Icing for decorating the cupcakes with green dots. The recipe was from an Ina Garten contemporary and acquaintance Sara Foster.  The book:   The Foster's Market Cookbook.  I substituted 1T water for the lemon juice.  The icing is great for decorating as it keeps a nice shine after in hardens up a bit.

* The cupcakes freeze very nicely for up to 2 months wrapped individually in wax paper and enclosed in a freezer ziplock bag.

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