Salted Caramel Brownie Cupcakes

 

Before Decorating
  
After Decorating
 
I actually made these the first day of the holidays, on Saturday, I just didn’t register them as part of the holidays because I made them the weekend before the holidays. This recipe is one of those classic American recipes with an overload of sugar and fat, but they did taste good.

For the original recipe go to:

http://bakerbynature.com/dark-chocolate-brownie-cupcakes-with-salted-caramel-frosting-and-a-giveaway/
My version is as follows:

Ingredients:

For the Dark Chocolate Brownie Cupcakes

1 cup unsalted butter

226g dark chocolate, chopped (I used high quality chocolate chips here)

1 cup light brown sugar, packed

1 teaspoon instant espresso powder (optional)

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

4 large eggs, at room temperature

1 cup all-purpose flour (be sure not to pack your flour here)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 cup bittersweet chocolate chips

For the Salted Caramel Frosting

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1/2 cup heavy cream

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1 cup packed light brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 – 4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted

Method:

For the Dark Chocolate Brownie Cupcakes:

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius. Line a cupcake pan with liners; set aside.

2. Place the butter and chocolate in a heat-proof bowl and place that bowl over a saucepan of gently simmering water, making sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the simmering water. Stir until the butter and chocolate are completely melted. Add in the brown sugar, espresso powder (if using), and vanilla; whisk well to combine. Remove from heat and allow mixture to cool for a few minutes.

3. Once the mixture has slightly cooled, add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Whisk in the flour, salt, and baking powder – careful not to over mix here! Fold in the chocolate chips.

4. Divide the batter among the prepared cupcake cups. Filling to roughly 2/3 of the liners.

5. Bake until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 21-25 minutes. Allow the cupcakes to cool in the pan for 20 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

For the Salted Caramel Frosting:

1. In a medium-sized saucepan over medium-heat, combine the butter, cream, vanilla, brown sugar, and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the sugar melts and the mixture comes to a low simmer; about 4 minutes. 

2. Remove the mixture from heat and let it cool (mix occasionally so that it does not form a skin), then transfer the mixture into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. 

3. Add 2 cups of confectioners’ sugar to the bowl and beat on medium-low speed until well combined. 

4. Add in another 1-2 cups of confectioners’ sugar and beat until thick and fluffy; 4-6 minutes. Frost cooled cupcakes as desired.

For this recipe my main troubles were with the icing, it set rock hard once I iced the cupcakes. This could be because I added the maximum amount of sugar due to the fact that the mixture was too hot and probably melting the sugar. Which is why next time I am going to try letting it cool completely before adding the icing sugar. 

Also I slightly overfilled my cupcakes, so I just put how much to fill them in as a reminder for next time.

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