It's been a tough week around our house. The stomach bug hit us, and it hit us hard. Thankfully we're all better, and it makes me that much more grateful for our health. So after disinfecting our home, and doing about 50 loads of laundry, I made s'more cupcakes. Why s'more cupcakes? Well because after the week we had, we needed a treat.
At first, I was just planning to make some good 'ol chocolate cupcakes. Something quick. Then, I thought, let's put something crunchy in there. When I came across some graham crackers, it hit me: s'more cupcakes!
Since I bake so often, my pantry and fridge are always well stocked. (I like to refer to it as being "well stocked" and others in my family, like my husband, like to call it "hording." Either way I almost always have the ingredients to make a sweet treat with very little planning.) My well-stocked pantry (or hording) meant that I even had a jar of marshmallow cream! So, fluffy marshmallow frosting would top this baby off. To give the cupcakes even more of a s'more feeling, before piping a generous amount of frosting on to each cupcake, I dipped the top in chocolate ganache. Then dipped the edges of the cupcake in graham cracker crumbs.
Since I had the bottom and top of the cupcake all s'mored out, I didn't want the inside of the cupcake to feel left out. So I decided to fill it up with some milk chocolate ganache. I almost always use dark chocolate in my baking (and my straight-up chocolate eating), but s'mores require milk chocolate, usually in the form of Hershey's. Yup, happened to have some mini-size milk chocolate Hershey's Bars in the back of the pantry too.
There you have it – s'more cupcakes. The perfect way to end a horrible week!
Ingredients for the Graham Cracker Crust
4 full graham crackers
1/4 stick (2 tbs) unsalted butter, melted
1/8 cup granulated sugar
Instructions for the Graham Cracker Crust
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Line a 12-cup, cupcake tin with paper liners.
Crush the graham crackers into fine crumbs. (I placed the crackers in a large, zip-top bag and crushed them with a wooden rolling pin.)
Mix the graham cracker crumbs with the sugar and melted butter. Divide the crust mixture into 12 equal parts, and place at the bottom of each cupcake liner. Pat the crust down with the back of a spoon to create a well-packed crust.
Bake for 5 to 8 minutes or until golden. Remove from the oven, and proceed with the recipe.
Ingredients for the Cupcakes
Adapted from the chocolate cupcake in the book Cupcakes! by Elinor Klivans
1 1/2 ounces bittersweet chocolate – chopped
1 1/2 ounces semisweet chocolate – chopped
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs at room temperature
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup strong brewed coffee, cooled
1/2 cup strained yogurt (or sour cream) (To strain yogurt, simply place it in a fine-meshed strainer lined with paper towels. Place the strainer over a bowl. Allow it to sit in the refrigerator for a few hours.)
Instructions for the Cupcakes
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Melt both chocolates until smooth. You can melt the chocolate in a double boiler, but I prefer to melt chocolate in the microwave. I place the chocolate in the microwave and warm it in 30-second intervals. Mixing the chocolate after each interval. Once the chocolate is almost melted, remove it from the microwave. Mix the chocolate until it is smooth. Place it off to the side to cool off a bit.
In a medium bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
In the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar for about 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy. Scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
Stop the mixer and add in the melted chocolates. Mix until the chocolates are just incorporated.
Add the eggs and mix until the eggs are just incorporated.
Next add the vanilla and yogurt (or sour cream). Mix until streaks of white from the yogurt or sour cream are completely incorporated into the mixture.
Finally, add the dry ingredients and coffee alternately in three additions, starting and ending with the dry ingredients. Mix until just incorporated.
Fill the cupcake liners 2/3 full. Bake in the center of the oven for 18-20 minutes. Remove the cupcakes from the oven when the centers of the cupcakes no longer jiggle.
Cool the cupcakes on a wire rack until completely cool.
Ingredients for Semisweet Chocolate Ganache
12 ounces of semisweet chocolate, chopped fine
1 cup heavy cream
1 tsp good quality vanilla extract
Instructions for the Semisweet Chocolate Ganache
Place the chopped chocolate in a large bowl.
Warm the cream until it's just about to boil.
Pour the warm cream over the chocolate. Allow it to sit for a minute or two. Then mix until the chocolate is fully melted and the mixture is shiny.
Add the vanilla and mix to combine.
Place the ganache in the refrigerator and allow it to cool and thicken.
Ingredients for the Fluffy Marshmallow Frosting
1 7-ounce container of marshmallow cream
1 1/2 sticks (12 tbs) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/8 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Instructions for the Fluffy Marshmallow Frosting
Cream the marshmallow cream and butter in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix until well combined and fluffy.
Add the vanilla and salt. Mix until combined.
Add the powdered sugar on low, and mix until smooth and creamy.
Ingredients and Instructions for Assembling the S'more Cupcakes
Baked and cooled chocolate cupcakes with a graham cracker crust
Prepared semisweet chocolate ganache
Prepared fluffy marshmallow frosting in a piping bag fitted with a large star tip
Graham cracker crumbs
12 Graham crackers cut into small rectangles
12 Hershey's milk chocolate pieces
Using a sharp paring knife, cut a 1/2 inch hole in the center of each cupcake. Place a heaping teaspoon of the chocolate ganache in the center.
Heat the remaining ganache until it's back to a liquid consistency. Dip the edges of the cupcake in the melted ganache. Roll the wet edges in graham cracker crumbs.
Pipe the marshmallow frosting on top. Finally, place a small graham cracker and Hershey's milk chocolate piece on top of each cupcake.
Yields 12 cupcakes.
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