Monday, October 7, 2013

Hershey's Double Chocolate Cupcakes

Happy Monday! Hope everyone had a delicious weekend! The Baron and I had a little getaway ourselves where we went hiking and checked out some hidden food gems out in the Illinois River Valley. We had our fill of some of the best fried chicken we've ever had, amazing pecan pie with cinnamon ice cream, nostalgic burgers which we washed down with frosty mugs of rootbeer and some gorgeous fall scenery in the outdoors. And now it's back to the daily grind on a Monday. This week, I'm featuring some chocolate treats that were featured when I partnered up with Hershey's Chicago in our What's Cookin, Chicago kitchen. I invited Hershey's bakers to come in and give us some pointers, tips and tricks on cupcake decorating not too long ago. For their visit, they shared with us some of the popular desserts and I'm passing them on because they were too delicious to not share! Hershey's Chocolate is practically a household name these days as folks are starting to think about candies they want to pass out for Halloween. But the brand is more than candy. Chocolate is their specialty so it's no surprise I'm kicking off this week long chocolate fest with these Double Chocolate Cupcakes. Melted chocolate stirred into a cake batter makes for a rich and decadent cupcake where the only thing to make it even better is a chocolate frosting that's perfectly good all on its own...

This cupcake uses two forms of chocolate - the Hershey's unsweetened chocolate baking bar in the batter and Hershey's cocoa powder in the frosting. What's interesting about the cake batter recipe is the use of vinegar. It's not often I use vinegar in a cake but doing so enhances the chocolate flavor and you don't event taste any vinegar. Also, I doubled the frosting amounts because the Baron believes cupcakes are only a vehicle for frosting! To jazz up the cupcakes with more chocolate (if you dare), add a drizzle of chocolate syrup over the top and a chocolate kiss candy for good measure...

Hershey's Double Chocolate Cupcakes
recipe from Hershey's

1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup water
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 sections (1/2 oz. each) HERSHEY'S Unsweetened Chocolate Baking Bar, melted
Chocolate frosting (recipe follows)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line muffin cups with baking cups and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt.

In a 2 cup measuring cup, add water, oil, vinegar and vanilla, stirring to combine. Slowly add the liquid mixture to the bowl and whisk until batter is smooth.

Stir in the melted chocolate.

Using a scoop, fill muffin cups 2/3 full with batter. Bake in the preheated oven for 16 to 18 minuutes or until wooden pick inserted in center of cupcakes comes out clean.

Remove from pan to wire rack and cool completely before frosting.


Hershey's Chocolate Frosting

8 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup HERSHEY'S Cocoa
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a large bowl, beat the butter with an electric mixer.

Add the powdered sugar and cocoa alternately with milk, while beating to a spreading consistency.

Stir in vanilla.

Makes 2 cups of frosting.