Birthday cupcakes! G’s boyfriend’s birthday was Tuesday. Of course I asked him what kind of cake he’d like. After thinking about it for a minute, he said German chocolate. I used Ina Garten’s recipe for German chocolate cupcakes but changed up her frosting just a bit. She put almond extract and blanched, sliced almonds in hers. I knew I didn’t want almond. First of all, I didn’t have any almonds. Second of all, don’t you want pecans and coconut to be the star of the frosting? I toasted a cup of pecans and chopped them and chopped some roasted spiced pecans and cashews. I know, I know. I was just complaining about adding almonds, but the cashews honestly didn’t outshine the pecans. I knew my green-eyed Irish guy wouldn’t touch these cupcakes with the traditional frosting so I made half of them with chocolate butter cream. They are decadently chocolate and the frosting is sublime. Speaking of the frosting, it is labor intensive. It involves 15 minutes of continuous whisking. Work those arms! Then have a cupcake to celebrate the workout.
German Chocolate Cupcakes
Find Ina Garten’s original recipe here
1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) room temperature unsalted butter
2/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
2 room temperature large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
1 cup room temperature buttermilk (or 1 Tbs. white vinegar and enough milk to make 1 cup at room temperature)
1/2 cup room temperature sour cream
2 tablespoons freshly brewed coffee
1 3/4 cups flour
1 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1 12 oz. can evaporated milk
1 1/4 cups light brown sugar, lightly packed
4 large egg yolks
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups sweetened flaked coconut
1 cup pecans, toasted and chopped 1 cup roasted spiced pecans and cashews (like German roasted with cinnamon you can find at the mall), chopped 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two muffin tins with 18 or 19 cupcake liners.
In a small bowl, sift flour, cocoa, soda and salt. In another small bowl combine the buttermilk, sour cream and coffee. In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, mix butter and both sugars until light and fluffy or about 5 minutes. Scrape down sides and bottom of bowl with a spatula. Add the eggs one at a time mixing well after each addition. Add in vanilla and mix well. Start by adding 1/3 of the buttermilk mixture, then 1/3 of the flour mixture, ending with the flour mixture, mixing well between each addition on low speed. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to make sure there are no pockets of unmixed ingredients. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pans on a wire rack for 10 minutes before removing cupcakes to wire rack to cool completely.
Melt the butter in a large saucepan on medium heat. Whisk in the evaporated milk, brown sugar and egg yolks. Simmer, whisking continuously, for 15 minutes until mixture thickens. Remove from heat and whisk in vanilla, coconut, nuts and salt. Allow to cool for an hour. I had to refrigerate mine for about another hour before it thickened enough to spread on cupcakes. Frost cupcakes. Store in an air tight container. Now let them eat cake!
Wishing you love, laughter and cake,