Valentine Greetings: Chocolate Surprise Cupcakes

choc-surprise-cupcakes

“Yay! Another snow day!”

After a winter of warm days and relatively little snow, Mother Nature decided that we needed three feet to fall within a week and a half. My middle child is vexed that the three tests she was supposed to have had a week ago still have not been administered due to two snow days and three start of school delays. My oldest and youngest, however, have been thrilled for the extra time to hang out in dorms with no classes (my oldest at college) and to play at home with the family (my youngest in middle school).

As a family, we’ve made use of the snowbound time to catch up on the never-ending t0-do list and to spend time together since the youngest really wanted us to play with him. Many hours sledding in our backyard, playing board games, competing on the Wii, and watching reruns of old shows left the family in the mood for something “special” to eat.

Since Valentine’s Day is tomorrow, we decided to make some Chocolate Surprise Cupcakes, one of the family’s favorites. You make a chocolate raspberry center which you tuck into the cupcake batter so when you eat it, you enjoy a nice creamy flavor surprise.  What’s nice about this recipe is that it’s free of most foods folks tend to be allergic to, so just about anyone can enjoy them.

Chocolate Surprise Cupcakes

Filling Ingredients:

1 cup Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips

2 tbsp Polaner’s seedless raspberry All-Fruit

2 tbsp Earth Balance vegan, soy free butter

Cooking Instructions:

  1. In a microwave safe large glass container, place all three ingredients and microwave for 1 minute. Stir until the mixture is completely smooth.
  2. Place the container in the refrigerator and let the mixture cool and begin to thicken. It can take anywhere from 10-30 minutes, depending on how hot your microwave makes the chocolate, how exact your measuring is, etc…. What you want is for the mixture to be thick enough when you spoon it that you can mound the chocolate onto a cookie sheet.
  3. When the chocolate has thickened enough to form little mounds, place a piece of wax paper on a cookie sheet and create 24 chocolate mounds using a teaspoon to scoop out the chocolate mixture. You essentially are making a little “hershey kiss” of your own.
  4. Once you have 24 more or less equally sized chocolate mounds, put them into the fridge to harden while you make the cupcake batter.

Cupcake Ingredients:

3 cups favorite gluten free flour blend

1/2 cup unsweetened Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa powder

3 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

1 cup agave

3/4 cup safflower oil

2 cups water

2 tsp vanilla

3 tbsp vinegar

Baking Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line 24 cupcake tins with cupcake liners.
  2. Mix the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt well and set aside.
  3. Mix the agave, oil, water, and vanilla and add to the dry ingredients with the vinegar. Mix well until the dry ingredients are moistened.
  4. Put 1 1/2 tbsp of batter into each of the 24 cupcake tins.
  5. Carefully peel and place one of the chocolate raspberry mounds into the center of each of the cupcake tins.
  6. Divide the remaining batter evenly among the cupcake tins (about 1 1/12 tbsp) to cover the chocolate mounds.
  7. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes. The cupcakes will be rounded, firm to the touch, and a toothpick inserted into the center will come out clean. My oven always bakes them in 15 minutes but a friend said hers took 20.
  8. Let the cupcakes sit in the tins for 5 minutes. Then remove them to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
  9. Frost with your favorite frosting recipe or use the one below is one I’ve adapted from Elana’s Pantry.

Frosting Ingredients:

1 cup Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips

1/2 cup avocado oil

2 tbsp agave

2 tsp vanilla

your preference of “milk”

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Mix the chips, oil, and agave together in a microwave safe glass container.
  2. Heat the chips for 1 minute. Stir. If it needs to be heated more, do so 20 seconds at a time until you can stir the chips smooth.
  3. Add the vanilla and stir well.
  4. Transfer the mixture to your mixer bowl.
  5. Put into the freezer until the mixture begins to hard around the edges but is still softer in the center.  This can take between 15 to 30 minutes.
  6. Using your mixer, blend the chocolate mixture on high speed until the mixture becomes thick and smooth. You may need to scrape down the sides a couple of times.
  7. Add “milk”, a teaspoon at a time until the mixture is to the creamy consistency you prefer for frosting your cupcakes.

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s