Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Happy Single's Awareness Day

A.K.A: Happy Valentine's Day. Hope everyone had a wonderful Valentine's day! I was planning on getting this up sooner, but I got called into work and that put me behind a little, but didn't stop me. So in honor of Valentine's Day I made white chocolate cupcakes with white chocolate filling topped with strawberry cream cheese frosting, chocolate ganche, and a chocolate covered strawberry. whew. These cupcakes had a lot of steps, obviously, and were pretty time consuming. I thought they were really good, but the cupcakes themselves didn't have a distinct white chocolate flavor and I really got my hopes up for that. So next time, I'm sure I will be doubling the white chocolate. Here's what you need for the cupcakes
Flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, white bakers chocolate (I used chocolate chips and I think they would have a stronger flavor with bakers chocolate), water, vanilla, butter, sugar, eggs, and buttermilk. In a medium-size bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
 In a small saucepan, melt together white bakers chocolate and water
 Once melted, turn off heat and stir in vanilla; set aside
In a large bowl, beat together butter and sugar about 2 minutes. Add in eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition
Alternately add the flour mixture and buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Mixing the batter until well combined
Pour in the white chocolate mixture, gently folding in. I added white chocolate chips to the batter, DON'T do this. The chocolate chips sunk to the bottom, burned, and stuck to the cupcake liners. I had a feeling this was going to happen, but I did it anyways
Scoop batter into muffin tins, filling each one about 2/3 way full. Bake about 15 minutes and cool on wire rack
While cupcakes are cooling, prepare the white chocolate filling. You will need butter, white bakers chocolate, powdered sugar, and heavy cream. (Once again I used white chocolate chips and probably should have used white bakers chocolate like the recipe called for, but I was too lazy to go to the store)
Melt butter and white chocolate together in a saucepan
Turn off the heat and whisk in powdered sugar
Set aside. Whip heavy cream in mixing bowl until soft peaks form, using electric mixer at high speed
Slowly mix in the white chocolate mixture, beating at low speed. Set aside and prepare the rest of the cupcake. Now prepare the strawberry frosting. I made this ahead of time and forgot to take pictures, sorry! I'll just post the recipe at the bottom. Now for the chocolate covered strawberries, I cut them in half and dipped them in white bark chocolate. Let harden on wax paper
Lastly, the chocolate ganache
All you need is semi-sweet bakers chocolate and heavy cream. Chop bakers chocolate up in a bowl; set that aside and put heavy cream in a pot. Bring that just to a boil and pour over the chopped chocolate. Whisk together until chocolate is completely melted and smooth. Set that aside until ready to decorate the cupcakes. Don't let cool to long because it will harden up. Now fill the cupcakes
 Put the top back on the cupcake, covering the filling
Pipe on the frosting
 Dip in the somewhat cooled ganache
Top with a chocolate covered strawberry
Happy Valentine's Day to me :)
This is seriously Valentine's day stuffed into one delicious bite

Valentine's Day Cupcakes

White Chocolate Cupcakes:
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 (1 oz) squares white chocolate (this is what the recipe calls for, but I would at least use 8 squares)
1/2 cup hot water
1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups white sugar
3 eggs
1 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
In small saucepan, melt white chocolate and hot water over low heat. Stir until smooth, and allow to cool to room temperature; add vanilla. Set Aside. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Stir in flour mixture alternately with buttermilk (beginning and ending with dry mixture). Mix in white chocolate mixture. Pour into cupcake lined muffin tins, filling about 2/3 way full. Bake 15 minutes. Cool in pan 2 minutes, then take out of pan and set on a wire rack/foil/wax paper until cooled completely.

White Chocolate Filling:
6 (1 oz) squares baking chocolate, coarsely chopped
6 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/3 cup heavy cream

Melt white chocolate and butter in small saucepan over low heat until smooth. Remove from heat and stir in powdered sugar. Cool slightly. Whip heavy cream in mixing bowl until soft peaks form, using electric mixer at high speed. Gradually add white chocolate mixture, beating at low speed. Cut a well in each cupcake, fill with white chocolate filling and cover with the flat top cupcake, hiding the filling. Prepare frosting.

Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting:
8 oz. cream cheese, soft
1 stick butter, soft
1 tsp. vanilla
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3/4 cup fresh strawberries, rinsed, capped, and mashed to make ½ cup, drained well

Combine the cream cheese and butter until fluffy. Add the vanilla, sugar, and drained strawberries.  Blend the frosting until the sugar has been incorporated.  Then raise the speed to medium and mix the frosting another minute or until the frosting lightens and is well combined. Frost filled cupcakes.

Chocolate Ganache:
6 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup heavy cream

Place the chocolate into a medium bowl. Heat the cream in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Bring just to a boil, watching very carefully because if it boils for a few seconds, it will boil out of the pot. When the cream has come to a boil, pour over the chopped chocolate, and whisk until smooth. Allow the ganache to cool slightly before pouring over the cupcakes. (This is not that sweet so you might want to add powdered sugar, but then you will need to add more cream to thin out.) Dip cupcakes in finished and cooled ganache. Top with white chocolate bark covered strawberry. Let ganache harden before serving. Keep cupcakes stored in fridge.

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