Valentine’s Day Chocolate Cupcakes

For Valentine’s Day I think the nicest things are something sweet, something shared and a few nice words. These combine all three and are sure to impress whomever it is you are trying to impress this year. Super easy cupcakes with a gorgeous glossy ganache and a few nice words for my loved one. The recipe for the cupcakes is another Nigella Lawson one, but I actually got it off another food blog, the ganache and the decorating ideas came from the Martha Stewart website, a bit from everywhere, but isn’t that what cooking is all about?

Food Processor Cupcakes

125g butter, softened
125g sugar
125g plain flour
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2-3 tablespoons of milk
2 tablespoons cocoa powder (leave this out to make vanilla cupcakes)
 
Chocolate Ganache
113g Dark chocolate, broken into squares
1 tablespoon glucose syrup
2/3 cup thickened cream
 
A handful of white chocolate melts for decorating

Preheat oven to 200C, or 180C if using fan-forced.

Place all the ingredients except the milk into a food processor. Blitz in short bursts until the mixture is well combined and smooth.

Whilst pulsing the mixture, gradually pour in the two tablespoons of milk through the food processor funnel. Blitz until the milk has been incoporated. The mixture should look smooth and creamy.  Add another tablespoon of milk if necessary.

Divide the mixture across a patty-lined 12-muffin tin. A tablespoon or two should be sufficient, as the mixture should triple in size when baked.

Bake for 15-20min or until risen and tops spring back to the touch. Cool on a cooling rack. Ice when cool.

To make the ganache, heat cream in a saucepan over a medium high heat. In a heatproof bowl add broken chocolate and glucose syrup. Once the cream is hot (DO NOT BOIL) pour over the chocolate and stir until smooth and glossy. Let cool for one minute. Either dip or spoon and spread the icing onto to cupcakes. Let set for thirty minutes. Store in an airtight container.

To decorate for Valentine’s Day or other special occasion. Using white chocolate melts, put a handful in a mug in the microwave for 60 seconds, once done stir until smooth. Fit a piping bag (I use multix disposable ones) with a size 2 piping nozzle and pour chocolate into the bag. Pipe words that mean something to you or to fit a theme.

I am ever so happy with how these turned out. Admittedly I did practice the piping onto baking paper twice this week just to work out the best angle for getting fluent and legible words. Some of the final product aren’t quite perfect, but hey they will still get eaten. The white chocolate sets hard which is a nice little crunch against the silky runny icing and the soft and fluffy cupcake. The cupcakes are quite plain, but it is a basic mixture. I also found that the icing is quite bitter being all dark chocolate, next time I would use half dark and half milk, even though Daniel loves the dark chocolate bitterness. Equally if you don’t like dark chocolate use milk otherwise you could find these inedible.

This is my favourite cupcake mainly because I didn’t stick my finger in the icing and the piping didn’t run together. After trying one of the cupcakes for dessert I definately think they would be even better as just vanilla or something like raspberry and coconut. I think for a chocolate cake I would like it to be a little denser, but it still has a great flavour and texture.

I will do another post during this week for the cheesecake I make for Valentine’s Day dessert, so get baking. I’m sure your Valentine will love these gorgeous cupcakes as much as mine does.

Love Sonia xx

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