These must be a chocoholic's dream. The picture itself in this book is enough to make my mouth water and I could not wait to dive into making these particular cupcakes.
Start off with the usual sponge ingredients for a chocolate cupcake. It actually started off as a disaster! As I was just about to pour the caster sugar a the first of the dry ingredients I noticed it had little mites in it. I figured they must have been flour mites so checked the flour packet and sure enough there were more. So almost a full bag of sugar and flour had to be thrown away. As I open my pull out corner unit cupboard to get a fresh bag I noticed one walking around on the shelf. /this resulted in me pulling everything out of the cupboard and checking all the other different varieties of sugar and flour I had. The mites were in all the open packets, so out went another basically full bag of icing sugar along with some expired items that had been forgotten at the back. The only thing they didn't attack was the Cornflour. Miffed as to why, only thing I noticed was that it was in a plastic inner bag rather than the usual paper kind. Scrubbed the shelf down and put everything back in then set about my measuring again. Lucky I make sure I always have at least two bags of each sugar and flour in the store at all time. I then had a problem with my scales turning off just as I started to sieve the flour into the sugar and as a result had to start that over again too. What a mission!
Drama over and everything else went well with the sponge mixture. Popped that into the oven for 20 minutes and then out on the side to cool for a few hours so they were cold enough to cut, fill and frost later in the evening.
The filling and topping it literally a sugar coma waiting to happen. Its just double cream warmed and then poured over chopped dark chocolate until that has melted and its mixed together well. It then needs to be covered with clingfilm to prevent a skin forming and left to chill on the side. I didn't quite have the while 400g needed for the chocolate but was just under so didn't see it as a problem.
Whilst this was chilling I was running around maniacally, sorting my daughter's bath, bottle and bed. Then grabbing 5 mins to eat my dinner before a friend arrived. She smelt the cupcakes and frosting as soon as she arrived and so was only too happy to wait whilst I filled and iced the cupcakes, eager to try the first finished one. I cut the middle and filled each cake as I went, one at a time. The chocolate cream was a good consistency to go into the hollow middle of the cupcake but when it came to frosting the top it didn't work out too well. It was too runny, basically just like melted chocolate and was running off the sides of the sponge and all down the cases. I was at a loss as to why this was as expected it to be firmer, judging by the picture in the cook book. After brainstorming we decided to pop the filling into the fridge to try and get it to set a little bit more. Just enough to cover the top without making a huge mess.
Off to dye some hair whilst we waited for the fridge to do its magic. Twenty minutes later and it seemed to have done the trick so I sent about dolloping the cream onto the sponge although I couldn't get it to swirl. Even so it looked nice, glossier than the photo, not sure if maybe the slightly smaller amount of dark chocolate than stated made a difference but I was pleased with the results. They can't all look the same as the cook book and its the taste that matters in the end.
I didn't actually get to have a cupcake with a cuppa for my elevens as too busy the next day so it wasn't until Friday evening that one first passed my lips (and went straight to the hips!) They were amazing, I almost melted. The frosting is a strong taste, but then you would expect it from what its made of. It worked well inside the sponge as didn't set as much due to the lack of air contact and was a nice addition. I like these cakes, was a little reluctant to give them away to others to taste but I am nothing but generous with my baking skills, modest too. Although I am an open chocoholic I don't think I could eat too many of these in a day. They are a special occasion cupcakes, too rich for every day consumption. Saying that, I might hear another one calling me this evening....