Friday, November 30, 2012

Chocolate Trials

Hello Sweets,

It's finally the weekend :)  Do you have anything excited planned for this weekend?  I don't have any other plans beside; going to the gym, packing my bags, and laundry (yes I know I live an exciting life).  What am I packing for you ask?  Well it's the Christmas season which means I am heading down to Texas to spend it with Nathan and his family.  I have some family in the neighboring state of Oklahoma, so we will be heading their way as well.  I've never been one for the Christmas season, but seeing Nathan and his family together celebrating with laughter and smiles has really changed my view :)  I've even thought of a great gift idea.  Now I can't go into too much detail because I have readers who will be getting this gift, but lets just say it will definitely have the Canuckette spin on it ;)

A couple of days ago it was my love's birthday, and sadly I was not there to celebrate it with him, but I am going to make up for it.  He LOVES chocolate cake, so I am going to make him one from scratch.  Now it sounds pretty simple right?  Well anyone who knows me, knows I put the pressure on myself to produce the best baked good, and with cakes that means moist deliciousness!  So for the last five days I've been researching, researching, and researching lol to find the perfect chocolate cake recipe.  Even after finding one I went looking for others just to have as a back up in case there was something off.  Then I started researching ways to ensure it was as moist as I could get it without ruining the balance of the recipe.  Of course there's the obvious, don't over mix the final batter mixture, but did you know that beating the egg whites and the yolks separately then adding them one at a time creates little air bubbles?  Or replacing white sugar with brown, because it holds moisture easier?  I learned all sorts of fun things about baking moist cakes today!  So get your beaters ready, because we are going to chocolaty moist cake town with a pit stop in icing island ;)

 Canuckette's Chocolate Cake
1 3/4C all purpose flour
2C brown sugar
3/4C cocoa powder
1 1/2Tsp baking soda
3/4Tsp salt
2 large eggs
1C buttermilk (or substitute 1 Tbsp vinegar, then fill up to 1C with milk waiting 5 minutes to thicken)
1/2C butter, melted
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
1C freshly brewed coffee (or 2Tsp of instant in 1C of boiling water)

1)  Preheat oven to 325F, line muffin pans with papers and set aside (if making a cake there is enough batter for 2 9" pans, either grease and flour or line with parchment paper).

2) In a large mixing bowl; combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, and salt.  

3)  Add eggs, buttermilk, melted butter, and vanilla, beat until just smooth.  

4)  Stir in hot coffee with metal spatula, mixture will be very runny.

5)  Pour batter into muffin cups 3/4 of the way full (makes 24), bake in the middle rack for 28 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Leave in pan for 15 minutes, then remove to a wire cooling rack.

In the meanwhile let's make some icing!

Decedant Chocolate Buttermilk Icing
1/4C butter, softened
2/3C cocoa powder
1-2C confectioners sugar
1 Tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1/3C milk

1)  In a medium bowl, combine butter, cocoa, salt, vanilla, part of the confectioners sugar, and part of the milk, mixing until well blended.  Adding in the remaining milk with the additional confectioners sugar, until you reach desired sweetness.

Once your cupcakes (or cake) are completely cooled, place icing in a piping bag (or my go to make shift sandwich bags lol) and decorate, then of course enjoy!
The chocolate icing is so decadent you don't need a lot :)

These cupcakes turned out exactly what I was looking for; light, fluffy, and moist!  I think I found a recipe worthy of my birthday boy, and I think he will be very happy with these little treasures.  Oh who am I kidding, he loves everything I make him lol just a bonus as to why I love this man :)

Well now that I have a treat for my birthday boy, I can shift my attention back to finalizing the Christmas surprises.  Well that and taking care of everything that needs to be done before I go, ahhhhh never enough time (or perhaps my organization is lacking lol).  Until next time.........

Stay sweet,

Jennifer xoxoxo

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