May 16, 2012

Chocolate-Amaretto Cupcakes

I wasn't overly impressed by last week's cupcake, so I wanted something special to make up for the lackluster showing for my coworkers. I also wanted something appropriately festive for the week of my birthday. These Chocolate-Amaretto Cupcakes from Betty Crocker The Big Book of Cupcakes seemed to fit the bill.

The frosting is quite unique for these cupcakes because you actually make a roux (a thickened paste of flour and milk) that is mixed into the frosting. Odd, eh? However, it yields a smooth frosting that is still spreadable after some time chilling in the refrigerator. Although delicious, the frosting oozes after any time standing at room temperature, so keep it chilled until devouring.

The original recipe calls to top the cupcakes with chocolate syrup and coarsely chopped chocolate chips. I thought it would be more fun to make my own chocolate sauce. And you know what? It was. And more delicious because I got to lick the spoon.

 Here's the recipe with my minor adaptations.

Chocolate-Amaretto Cupcakes
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 cup cocoa
2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/4 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup milk
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup flour
3/4 cup butter, softened
4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 Tbsp. amaretto
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup chocolate sauce

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line 23 cupcake tins, and set aside. In a large bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt.

Beat together oil and sugar. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Alternately add flour and milk, starting and ending with flour.

Fill cupcake liners approximately 2/3 full. Bake 14 to 18 minutes or until cupcakes are done. Cool in pans 5 minutes, and then cool completely on a wire rack.

While cupcakes are cooling, whisk together the milk and flour for the frosting over medium heat. Heat, stirring often, until mixture is thickened, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat, and set aside to cool completely (about 1 hour).

To finish frosting, beat together butter and powdered sugar until smooth. Beat in flour mixture until smooth. Beat in amaretto, and thicken with additional powdered sugar if needed to reach desired consistency. I found the frosting to be rather soft still, better suited to slathering than piping.

Slather (see?) frosting onto cupcakes. Top cupcakes with chocolate chips and chocolate sauce. Serve immediately or keep refrigerated prior to serving. Makes 23 cupcakes.

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