This week's Tuesdays with Dorie (TWD) recipe was chosen by Clara of I Heart Food4Thought: Chocolate-Chocolate Cupcakes. When I saw this recipe, I immediately knew I wanted to make them like the Hostess CupCakes many of us grew to love as kids - chocolate cupcakes filled with a delicious vanilla cream filling.
Dorie notes that you can use marshmallow fluff to fill these cupcakes, but I could not find any at my grocery store. All I could find was marshmallow creme. I've since discovered that "Marshmallow Fluff" is just a brand of marshmallow creme (ha!). Thinking I did not have any marshmallow fluff to use, I searched several blogs for a suitable filling recipe. There was one on Annie's Eats, but she noted that while it was good, it wasn't the same as the Hostess CupCake filling. The recipe on Baking Bites, however, was supposed to be spot on.
It has honestly been quite a while since I've had a Hostess CupCake, so it's hard for me to comment on the filling. It sure seemed close to what I remember. Authentic or not, the filling was pretty good. My only complaint about the filling was that it seemed to slightly separate, so it did not appear as smooth as the real thing.
As for the cupcakes themselves, these were wonderful. They were moist, light, and fluffy. The perfect chocolate cupcake. It seems that a lot of other TWD bakers found these to be too dry, but that was not the case with mine. I guess I was lucky in that these cupcakes turned out perfectly for me.
The next time I make these, I'll try just filling them with the marshmallow creme and see how they compare (that would certainly be simpler). I also love Dorie's suggestions to fill these with Nutella or chocolate ganache. I think these would also be great with a creamy, peanut butter filling. The possibilities are endless.
Thanks Clara, for choosing these delightful chocolate cupcakes. I've included the recipe below for the vanilla cream filling I used. If you would like the recipe for the cupcakes, you can find it here. Make sure you visit the TWD Blog Roll to see how everyone else enjoyed these chocolatey treats!
Don't forget... for those who have been on the fence about joining Tuesdays with Dorie - you have until October 31st to join. After Friday, membership in the group will be closed.
*A few recipe notes:
- The baking time is still 22-25 minutes if you halve the recipe. Mine was finished after 24 minutes.
- Many bakers found these cupcakes to be too dry. There was much debate as to whether this was due to overbaking, or too much flour. Part of this debate was due to the ambiguity as to how much 1 cup of flour weighs... Heidi over at Suburban Food found that Dorie uses the dip and sweep method of measuring and one cup of flour using this method weighs 4.8 ounces).
- Make sure you melt your chocolate first. That way it is completely cool by the time you need it (at the end).
- I used semisweet chocolate instead of bittersweet.
- I only have one muffin pan so I had to bake these in two batches. I hate not knowing how full to fill each muffin cup ("divide the batter evenly" is so vague). So I weighed it out for next time. Each muffin cup should be filled with approximately 1.75 ounces of batter (that weight is including the weight of the liner as well).
- There was just barely enough ganache to frost these cupcakes lightly. If you like to frost your cupcakes heavily, I would recommend doubling the recipe.
- Wrapped airtight (glazed or unglazed), these can be frozen for up to 2 months.
- For more recipe tips, click here.
Vanilla Cream Filling
from Baking Bites
3 tbsp all purpose flour
1/2 cup milk (low fat is fine) (I used skim)
1/2 cup butter (or trans fat-free shortening)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 scraped vanilla bean or 1 tsp vanilla extract
Whisk together the flour and milk and cook in a small saucepan over medium heat until thick (this will only take a few minutes). Stir continuously to prevent the mixture from clumping and do not bring it all the way to a boil. (Do not walk away from it! It will be slightly clumpy as it thickens but you should not get large clumps if you stir continuously.) When thickened (consistency will be that of a thin pudding or custard), strain with a mesh strainer into a small bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let cool completely to room temperature.
When the milk mixture is cool, cream the butter (or shortening) and sugar together in a medium bowl until light. Add in the milk/flour mixture and the scraped vanilla bean seeds (or vanilla extract) and beat at high speed with an electric mixer for 7 minutes, until light and fluffy.
Scrape into a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip, or a large ziplock bag with the corner cut off, and set aside until ready to fill your cupcakes.