Sunday, January 17, 2010

IC:E Winter Warm Up - Hot Chocolate Cupcakes

This is our first ever Iron Cupcake challenge. Yay! The theme for this month is Winter Warm Up, which is probably fantastic if you're in the northern hemisphere, but hey, I'm sweltering away in a heatwave here! All of which meant it was a little challenging to strain my memory back to those months of coldness and recall what it is that I use to warm up when it's really truly icy.

Mostly I use the central heating. But that didn't really inspire any great cupcake ideas :D

So instead, I opted for hot chocolate, because warming up from the inside out is usually the best course of action. My other alternative when I'm really desperate is washing the dishes, because the hot waters warms up the blood in my hands (because the veins there are closest to the skin, so the blood is most affected by the warm water - also why your hands swell when you're hot, so the blood can try to cool down. End today's biology lesson O:)), and again, washing dishes didn't really inspire anything brilliant for a cupcake, though I really must try sometime. Imagine a cupcake covered in soap-sud look-alikes, for example! So cool!


Right. Hot chocolate it is, because I don't drink coffee (love the smell, hate the taste), and because hot chocolate isn't interesting enough, it has to be the real old-fashioned traditional hot chocolate. And when I say 'traditional', I mean the Aztecs who invented the stuff ;) They drank their chocolate spiced with chili, so I decided I'd add some to the cupcakes :)

The Recipe

1 2-inch chilli, finely chopped

1/3c boiling water
1c butter
1c chopped chocolate (I used dark, I think it gives mud cakes a richer flavour)
1c self raising flour
1/2c cocoa
1/2t bicarb soda
1 1/4c caster sugar
4 eggs
1/2c milk

Preheat oven to 160C. Line the bottoms of two 12-hole muffin pans. Pour the boiling water over the chilli and let it stand for five minutes. Melt the butter and chocolate with the chilli-infused water. Sift the flour, cocoa and bicarb. Stir in the sugar. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and stir in the eggs, milk and chocolate mix until combined. Bake in a cupcake pan for ~20mins, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

To assemble:
Cool cakes in pan for 5 mins then turn out onto wire rack. Once completely cool, break about half the cupcakes in half and put a half cake into the bottom of some tea cups and mugs. Stack whole cupcakes on top until the cake reaches about 1cm (1/3in?) below the rim. Press down firmly.

Whip 150mL of cream with 1t vanilla essence and 1T icing sugar. Spread the cakes liberally with the cream then sprinkle with drinking chocolate or other decorations.

The Results

Can we all say oh my goodness delicious?! I seriously think the aftertaste of these gorgeous critters is EXACTLY like a chocolate milkshake! So much squee!! The chili isn't really strong - if you wanted more spice you could easily double the amount I added - but it's enough to give the cake a warm hint and that delicious aftertaste. Yumyumyum. I'll definitely be making these again :D

The Prizes

Part of the contest rules are that I have to show you the prizes we're competing for. Totally tragic, I know :D So, these are the fantastic prizes/sponsors of the wonderful Iron Cupcake event (yes, I love my adjectives today).

Our Generous IronCupcake:Earth Prize Providers:

Voting will open next week. I'll post a link up when it's time, and also put a link right here :) In the mean time, happy cupcaking!


Merc said...

Waaaaant. Lovely. O:) I'm craving cake now...

Liana Brooks said...

Oh! So yummy! We had the same idea. Shall I post my recipe too, or just leave yours?

Amy said...

Merc - lol, I'll send you some via carrier bat :D

Li - Go ahead and post yours! We're allowed up to three entries, after all :D

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