Monday, February 1, 2010
Chocolate Peanut Butter Truffle Cupcakes
Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and whether you love it or hate it, the holiday can’t help but make you think of sugary goodness. With that in mind, I welcome you to Sweets Week at The Well-Fed Newlyweds. For the next week (or maybe a little longer), we will be featuring all manner of the sweet and delicious.
As I’ve mentioned before, I’m convinced Stan fell in love with me, in part, because of all the apple pies I baked for him at the beginning of our relationship. Take heed single sisters, if the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, then homemade baked goods must surely be the fast track to love. And while we may be newlyweds, this Valentine’s Day marks the sixth anniversary of our first date. Yes, our first date was on Valentine’s Day – a horrible day for a first date, full of unnecessary wondering over the wisdom of showing up with a card or candy. It does, however, make for a nearly impossible to forget anniversary, so that’s a bonus. (In case you were wondering, Stan showed up at my door with a couple of treats so uniquely thoughtful he still gets “awwwws” when people hear the story. Maybe I’ll tell you one day.)
No matter your plans for this Valentine’s Day, you will be happy celebrating with today’s cupcakes. Rich chocolate cupcakes with a peanut butter truffle hidden inside. Cupcakes topped with chocolate peanut butter ganache. Chocolate Peanut Butter Truffle Cupcakes. Are you drooling yet? You should be. Because these are mouthwateringly good. Fancy enough to share with your sweetheart on Valentine’s Day. Numerous enough to share with your single friends. Dangerously good enough to want to keep the whole pan for yourself.
** P.S. These cupcakes make the best tasting cake batter I have ever tasted. If you are into licking beaters and bowls, do not pass up this opportunity. Seriously, I wanted to put my face in the bowl and lick it clean. I resisted. Barely.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Truffle Cupcakes
Adapted from Cooking Pleasures, a magazine published by Cooking Club of America
6 oz. white chocolate, chopped
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
2 T. unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup strong coffee, room temperature
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
3 oz. semisweet chocolate, chopped
3 T. creamy peanut butter
Place white chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on medium heat for 1 to 3 minutes, or until chocolate is soft. Stir until smooth. (Do not microwave the chocolate until it looks completely melted. By that point, the chocolate will be scorched on the bottom.)
Whisk in peanut butter until smooth.
Refrigerate 20 to 30 minutes, or until firm. Using a tablespoon, scoop out 12 (1-inch) balls. Place balls on a waxed paper-lined freezer-safe plate. (Don’t worry if your peanut butter balls are not perfectly shaped. I used natural peanut butter, which made mine very difficult to roll. They’ll smooth out in the next step.)
Roll each peanut butter ball in the cocoa powder. Make sure to coat them completely.
Freeze truffles on the waxed paper-lined plate for 1 to 3 hours, or until frozen solid. (Truffles can be frozen overnight.)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place paper liners in 12 muffin cups. Spray the bottom of the liners with cooking spray.
In a medium bowl, sift together flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk to combine.
In a large bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer), combine buttermilk, coffee, eggs, and vanilla. Beat at medium speed until blended.
Reduce mixer speed to medium-low. Slowly add flour mixture and melted butter. Increase speed to medium-high and beat for 2 minutes.
Divide batter evenly among lined muffin cups.
Gently place a frozen truffle in the center of each cupcake. Do not push the truffles into the batter; they will sink in while they bake.
Bake 30 to 35 minutes, or until toothpicks inserted in the centers of the cupcakes come out clean. Cool cupcakes in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
Remove cupcakes from pan, and cool completely.
For Ganache Frosting:
Bring cream to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Remove pan from heat, and stir in semisweet chocolate until it is melted. Add peanut butter, and stir until smooth.
Pour frosting into a small bowl and cool until it is room temperature. (I was in a big hurry, so I did not wait for the frosting to cool. It seemed to work just fine anyway.)
Spread a scant tablespoon of frosting on each cupcake. Let the frosting set before serving.
Makes 12 cupcakes.