Hello readers! I trust you all had a good weekend, made it through Monday, and are ready to tackle another week. HA! Who am I kidding, right? Weekends just never seem long enough, especially when you pack them full of activities (or hours of baking), and Monday’s never seem short enough.
I had a friend’s dinner party to go to this past weekend, and I was pretty excited about it because I was asked to bring the dessert. I was anxious to try out some new cupcake recipes, and there is no better place to do that than at a dinner party with friends.
My ambitions, though not thought to be too high, were to create two types of cupcakes. One, which I had made before – Vanilla Pineapple Cream – and another, which I had not tried but was “sure it would be easy”. I should have known better…..
Chocolate Buttercream frosting…it just sounds delicious, doesn’t it? I had to have chocolate buttercream on my cupcakes – there was no going around it. Besides, how could I possibly impress my friends if I didn’t make chocolate buttercream?! Come to find out, I could have fed those boys canned frosting and they would not have known the difference. Ahh, hindsight is 20/20
I found a buttercream recipe at tastepotting.com (by far one of the BEST recipe sites EVER! It’s worthy of having it’s own blog entry, and one day I will get around to that.) I spent at least an hour sorting through hundreds of chocolate frosting recipes. Who knew there were about 500 variations of the very basic and traditional chocolate frosting? It was exhausting! Anyways, I found the one that seemed simple and delicious. It was time to bake!
I followed the recipe extremely close – at times questioning some of the steps, but never deviating. I’m known to disagree with a recipe and do it “my way” – problem is, my way doesn’t always work out – so I stuck to what I was told to do.
2 hours (that’s not a lie) and several back-up plans later, I had some form of chocolate frosting sitting in my mixing bowl – not chocolate buttercream, not really regular chocolate icing, kind of an airy, light, fluffy blob. It was pretty disappointing to be honest. I let it sit for a bit and decided I had to use it because I was running out of time before the party started. Luckily it piped pretty nicely onto the cupcake. Once I realized that it tasted REALLY GOOD on the cupcake, and didn’t look bad either, I felt better about my new “creation”.
I have to say though that by the time I was done with the frosting I had added several new ingredients into the mixer in order for it to thicken enough to stay on top of a cupcake. I also realized that I was right the first time and should have made it my own way when I saw that things on the recipe didn’t add up.
Overall, the cupcakes were a hit. I call my new and improved recipe “Chocolate Mousse”. I am proud to say that this recipe has been perfected through trial and error and tastes absolutely delicious. Enjoy!
Vanilla Pinapple Cream - Chocolate Mousse - Vanilla and Chcolate Mousse
Chocolate Mousse Buttercream
yield: about 5 cups
- 6 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 2 T. Dutch processed cocoa powder
- 1 t. vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
- 6 sticks (24 0z)of cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 12 0z semisweet chocolate, melted
Whisk together the eggs, sugar, and cocoa powder in the metal bowl of a stand mixer.
Fill a large saute pan with hot water and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Place the mixing bowl in the water and whisk the egg mixture constantly until the sugar is completely dissolved and the mixture is thick and fluffy and very hot, 3-4 minutes. The temperature should be between 120-140 degrees.
Remove the bowl from the water and using the whisk attachment, beat the eggs at a medium-high speed until they are tripled in volume and form very soft peaks. The bottom of the bowl should be completely cool to the touch, about 10 minutes. Beat in the vanilla and salt.
Switch to the paddle attachment on your mixer and turn to medium-high speed. Add the chucks of butter a couple at a time. Once all is added, turn the mixer on high speed and let it mix until the buttercream comes together and is shiny and smooth…don’t worry if it separates at first, it will come together!
Add the buttercream to another bowl (not metal…it is too cold and will seize the chocolate) and then add 1/2 of the warm chocolate and stir to incorporate. Add the remaining chocolate and stir to fully incorporate. Place the chocolate buttercream in a pastry bag fitted with a #807 tip and pipe your buttercream onto the cupcake. To get the swirl effect, simply start at one end of the cupcake and pipe in a circle. Continue piping until you have two layers of frosting. Stop squeezing the frosting and quickly pull tip away from cupcake.