Mini Chocolate Cupcakes w/ Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Do you remember this nursery rhyme?

Rub-a-dub-dub, three maids in a tub,
And who do you think were there?
The Butcher, The Baker, The Candlestick Maker,
And all of them gone to the fair.


For Halloween 2010, my friends and I dressed up as The Butcher, The Baker, The Candlestick Maker, and Yours Truly went as The Baker.  I was so excited to have an excuse to wear one of those floppy baker hats!  Of course, every good baker (real or not) must have yummy treats for people to sample.  I made mini chocolate cupcakes with vanilla buttercream frosting.

 One-Bowl Chocolate Cupcakes

3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup warm water
3/4 cup buttermilk
3 tablespoons safflower oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350.  Line muffin tins with paper liners; set aside.  Sift together cocoa powder, flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl.  Add eggs, warm water, buttermilk, oil, and vanilla, and mix until smooth, about 3 minutes.  
Divide batter evenly among muffin cups, filling each about 2/3 full.  Bake until tops spring back when touched, about 20 minutes.  Transfer to a wire rack; let cook completely.

Quick Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

3 cups confectioners' sugar
1 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 to 2 tablespoons whipping cream (I used milk.)

In a standing mixer fitted with a whisk, mix together sugar and butter.  Mix on low speed until well blended and then increase speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes.  Add vanilla and cream and continue to beat on memdium speed for 1 minute more, adding more cream if needed for spreading consistency.

Source:  Cupcakes:  Martha Stewart.com
               Frosting:  www.foodnetwork.com


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