Chocolate Stout Cupcakes with Baileys Cream Cheese Frosting

March 17, 2012 § 1 Comment

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! All week I have been thinking about blogging my recipe for good old fashion Corned Beef and Cabbage but my sweet tooth won out and I couldn’t resist experimenting with creating Chocolate Stout Cupcakes, topped of course, with Baileys Cream Cheese Frosting.

Who would think stout beer would be such a wonderful flavor enhancer to chocolate? These rich, fudgy cupcakes have wonderful dark chocolate flavor but without the bitter beer taste. I have to admit that they are a bit delicate and the tops sink, but the flavor is mouthwatering and if you plan to frost them as I did, it doesn’t matter that the centers form a divot. This recipe works fine if you are making cupcakes using cupcake liners but I think it would be too fragile to use as a cake. At some point I will do more experimenting but this recipe is certainly worth blogging.

Oh, and as for the corned beef…stay tuned because I always make extra so I can make homemade Corned Beef Hash for breakfast!

Chocolate Stout Cupcakes with Baileys Cream Cheese Frosting

1 cup Stout Beer, such as Guinness
1 cup Cocoa Powder, unsweetened
½ cup Sour Cream
1 ¼ cup Flour
½ tsp. Baking Powder
½ tsp. Baking Soda
1 cup (2-sticks) Butter, softened
*
1 ¾ cup Sugar
2 Eggs (extra-large)

* I use salted sweet cream butter. If you use unsalted butter add ¼ tsp. salt to this recipe

Preheat oven to 325°. Line 24 cupcake cups with paper liners.

Measure cocoa powder into a bowl and set aside. Heat beer in a small saucepan until just boiling. Pour hot beer over cocoa and whisk until thick and smooth. Cool to room temperature. When the chocolate mixture is cool, stir in the sour cream.

In another bowl measure flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Set aside.

In a large bowl, beat butter until smooth and shiny, about 1 minute. Add sugar and beat for 3 minutes. Add eggs and beat another minute. Add one third of the flour mixture, mixing well.  Add one third of the chocolate mixture, mixing well. Continue to alternately add the flour and chocolate by thirds until everything is incorporated. The batter will be very thick and easily hold stiff peaks.

Divide batter into the cupcake cups (it is approximately a quarter cup of batter per cup). Bake for 17 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool completely to room temperature before frosting.

NOTE: The cupcakes will sink in the center when they cool off.

Baileys Cream Cheese Frosting

8 oz. Cream Cheese, softened
¼ cup (½ stick) Butter, softened
1 Tbls. Baileys Irish Cream, boiled*
2-3 cups Confectioners Sugar

* For this recipe I boiled the Baileys it in the microwave for 20 seconds because young children would be eating this dessert. If you will be serving adults you would not need to boil out the alcohol.

In a large bowl, beat cream cheese, butter, and Baileys until well blended and smooth. On low to medium speed, beat in confectioners sugar, a half of a cup at a time. Two cups of confectioners sugar will give you a smooth but drippier consistency.  If you would like to pipe your frosting onto your cupcakes you will need up to three (maybe more) cups of confectioners sugar.

Frosting can be piped onto cupcakes with a cake decorating tip or spread with a knife.

For those of you who are like me and like to have an old fashion printed copy of recipes, the below link is to a PDF (minus photos to keep it on one page).

Chocolate Stout Cupcakes with Baileys Cream Cheese Frosting.pdf

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Chocolate Mint Cake in a Jar

March 14, 2012 § Leave a comment

Our clocks have sprung forward, the weather is warming up, crocuses have popped out of the ground, and St. Patrick’s Day is just a few days away. To help usher in the beautiful shades of green that comes with Spring, I’m posting this recipe for Chocolate Mint Cake in a Jar.

I recently came across an article online, “15 Dessert Recipes in a Jar – Cakes, cupcakes, brownies, and more by Andrea Roxas” and became fascinated with the concept of eating a decadent dessert out of a jar. I find this simple concept so much fun! It reminds me of when I was a Girl Scout and we made Frito Tacos and ate them around the campfire (taco meat filling, chopped lettuce and tomatoes, stuffed into individual serving size bag of Fritos).

We’ll see where this goes but to start, here is my first entry of “Food in a Jar”…

Chocolate Mint Cake in a Jar

8 – 8 oz. (half pint) glass Bell jars
Pam Canola Oil Cooking Spray

FOR CAKE:

½ cup Cocoa Powder
2 tsp. instant espresso or instant coffee
1 cup Water, boiling
2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
1 ¼ cups Flour
½ tsp. Baking Powder
½ tsp. Baking Soda
12 Tbls. (1 ½ sticks) Butter*, softened
1 ¼ cups Sugar
2 Eggs

MINT TOPPING:

1 cup Confectioner’s Sugar, sifted to remove lumps
2 Tbls. Butter, melted
1 Tbls. Milk
½ tsp. Vanilla Extract
2 tsp. Peppermint Extract
2-3 drops Green Food Coloring

CHOCOLATE TOPPING

1 cup Semisweet or Dark Chocolate
2 Tbls. Butter
2 Tbls. Milk
½ tsp. Peppermint Extract

* I use salted sweet cream butter. If you use unsalted butter add ¼ tsp. salt to this recipe

In a bowl, combine cocoa powder, instant coffee, boiling water, and vanilla extract.  Mix until smooth. Cool to room temperature.

Preheat oven to 350°. Spray the inside of the jars with cooking spray. Set aside. In a small bowl combine flour, baking powder, and baking soda.  Set aside.

In a large bowl beat butter with an electric mixer until smooth and shiny, about 1 minute. Add sugar and beat for 3 minutes. Add eggs, beating until well combined. Add 1/3 of flour mixture and beat until combined.  Add 1/3 cocoa mixture and beat until combined. Continue to add flour and cocoa alternately until everything is incorporated.

Pour ½ cup of batter into each jar. Place jars onto an oven safe tray and place in center of preheated oven. Bake for 17 minutes. Cakes are done when a long needle inserted in center comes out clean. Toppings can be added while cakes are warm but not hot.

NOTE: The cakes will rise to the top but shrink down to three-fourths the height of the jar. When the cakes cool they pull away from the glass, so the toppings will drip down the sides as opposed to forming a flat layer of frosting on top of cakes.

TO MAKE MINT TOPPING: In a bowl combine confectioners sugar, melted butter, milk, vanilla and peppermint extracts, and green food coloring. Divide mint topping among jars and pat sides of jar to help spread mint topping onto cakes.

TO MAKE CHOCOLATE TOPPING: In a microwave safe bowl, combine chocolate, butter, milk, and peppermint extract. Heat on high for 1 minute. Remove and whisk until smooth. If the chocolate is not melted through, continue to heat for 15 second intervals, stirring in between, until mixture is smooth. Distribute chocolate evenly among jars on top of Mint Topping, tapping sides to help spread evenly.

Cakes can be served as is or cover with lids to save (3 days at room temp or 5 days in the refrigerator).

For those of you who are like me and like to have an old fashion printed copy of recipes, the below link is to a PDF.

Happy Birthday OREO!

March 7, 2012 § 2 Comments

I’m nearly belated because I’m posting this rather late in the evening of March 6th but I had to do a special post to recognize the great OREO’s 100th Birthday! In honor of its centennial I am posting two recipes, one simple and one that takes a little more work but both I feel exemplify the sweet goodness of what you can do with this delectable cookie.

There are so many ways you can eat an OREO cookie – crushed into a pastry crust, crumbled on top of a sundae, whipped into a smooth cold concoction, or even deep fried (yes, really, Google it and you’ll find a plethora of recipes and how to videos). But nothing really compares to eating an OREO in the best, simplest form…straight up with a glass of cold milk.

Because of this momentous occasion I decided to create a category “The Great OREO” and add recipes that utilize the OREO throughout the year.

OREO Rice Krispie Treats

2 cups Rice Krispies
1 cup (approx. 10) OREO Cookies, broken into ¼ to ½ inch pieces
¼ cup Pretzels, broken into ¼ inch pieces
¼ cup Mini Chocolate Chips or Mini M&Ms *
2 Tbls. Butter
2 ½ cups Mini Marshmallows

* NOTE: Chocolate chips and M&Ms will melt when mixed with the marshmallow. Some pieces will stay whole but most will melt and the M&M candy shell will crumble and become flecks of color throughout the bars. If you prefer not to have the melted bits throughout the bars you could melt chocolate chips and drizzle thin stripes on top of bars. Be sure the chocolate is set before cutting.

Prepare an 8×8 pan by rubbing bottom and sides with butter.

NOTE: A silicone spoon rubbed with butter works great with marshmallow!

In a bowl, combine Rice Krispies, OREOs, pretzel, and mini chocolate chips or mini M&Ms. Set aside.

Place butter and marshmallows in a large microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high heat for 1 minute. Stir marshmallow and microwave for an additional 15-30 seconds until mixture is melted (continue heating at 15 second intervals if not completely melted).

Add Rice Krispie mixture to marshmallow and stir until combined well. Press mixture into the prepared 8×8 pan and let set for about 1 hour (can place in fridge to make it set faster). Cut into squares.

Makes 16 – 2”x2” squares. This recipe can be doubled if you want to make a 9”x12” pan.

For those of you who are like me and like to have an old fashion printed copy of recipes, the below link is to a PDF.

OREO Rice Krispie Treats.pdf

Turtle Cheesecake Bites

10 OREO Cookies, finely crushed (about ¾ cup)
2 Tbls. Butter, melted
12 Caramels (for this recipe I used KRAFT caramel squares)
2 Tbls. Milk
1/3 cup Pecans, toasted and chopped
1 – 8 oz pkg. Cream Cheese, softened
¼ cup Sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
1 Egg
¼ cup Chocolate Chips

NOTE: When melting caramels use a bowl about three times the size of the ingredients because the milk will bubble up when heating.

Preheat oven to 325°. Place mini cupcake liners into mini cupcake pan.

Mix OREO Cookie crumbs with melted butter.  Distribute mixture among 24 mini cupcake liners. Press crumbs into bottom of cupcake liners.

Place caramels and milk in a microwave safe bowl.  Heat on high for 1 minute. Stir caramel to make sure it is melted evenly.  If it needs additional melting, heat for 15 second intervals, stirring between. Add pecans and mix until combined evenly.

Using half of the caramel-pecan mixture, place about a half-teaspoon on top of OREO crumbs inside each cupcake liner. Cover the remaining half with plastic wrap to use later.

Using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla on medium speed for 1 full minute. Add the egg and mix on low until just blended. Distribute mix evenly among cupcake cups. Bake for 12-15 minutes (center may split but they should not be browned).

After cheesecakes are cooled off, microwave reserved caramel-pecan mixture and distribute evenly among cupcakes. Next, place chocolate chips into ziplock bag. Heat with the bag open on high for 30 seconds. Knead bag gently. If chocolate needs to be melted more continue to heat and knead for 15 second intervals. When chocolate is melted smooth, zip close bag pushing out most of the air. Cut the tip of one of the bottom corners and squeeze bag to pipe chocolate drizzle onto cheesecakes.

Makes 24 mini cheesecakes.

For those of you who are like me and like to have an old fashion printed copy of recipes, the below link is to a PDF (minus photos to keep it on one page).

OREO Turtle Cheesecake Bites.pdf

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