Wednesday 20 January 2016

Sea Salt & Dark Chocolate Cupcakes

Hey everyone :)

Hope you are well? Today is Wednesday and when I got up it was -4°C - I could barely move ... although saying that Dave constantly tells me it was around -25°C when he was in Canada so I shouldn't complain. My front door also locked itself shut yesterday so I was stuck in my house - so a perfect opportunity to make 'Sea Salt & Dark Chocolate Cupcakes'!

I found the recipe HERE on Sainsbury's website ... I have adapted it slightly but the original is there if you want it.

Batter Ingredients:
85g dark chocolate (minimum 70% cocoa solids), broken into pieces
70g golden caster sugar (I used normal as didn't have golden)
70g light muscovado sugar
120g butter, melted
1 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
1 tsp sea salt flakes
2 medium eggs
70m milk (whole or semi-skimmed milk)
140g self-raising flour, sifted
1 1/2 tbsp cocoa powder, sifted

Step 1 - Preheat the oven to 180°C (or fan 160°C or gas mark 4). Get a muffin tin and line with cupcake cases. I find the muffin trays are better than cupcake tins as they are deeper and keep the shape of the cupcake/muffin.

Step 2 - Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of hot water, once melted whisk in 70ml of boiled water and whisk until smooth. Leave this to the side to cool down.

Step 3 - Add both sugars to a bowl and rub with your fingers until you've got rid of little lumps or if your lazy like me put it in the mixer and put the whisk attachment on and leave it for 5 minutes - this works too!

Step 4 - Then add everything to the bowl of mixed sugar - so the cooled melted chocolate, cooled melted butter, vanilla essence, sea salt flakes, 2 eggs, milk, self-raising flour and cocoa powder. Mix together either with a wooden spoon or by food mixer (if doing it that way). Once all mixed together divide the mixture into the 12 cupcake cases - they will look very full but don't worry they won't overflow.

Step 5 - Bake for 20 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. Take out from the oven and leave in the tin for 5-10 minutes and then place onto a wire cooling rack - be careful as they will still be hot.

Ganache Icing Ingredients:
120ml double cream
120g dark chocolate (minimum 70% cocoa solids), finely chopped or grated
50g butter
1/2 tsp sea salt
100g icing sugar sifted

Step 1 - Add the cream, chocolate and butter into a bowl set over a pan of hot water. Stir until the mixture is melted. Once melted, stir in 60ml of hot water and whisk until combined together and glossy looking. Stir in the salt flakes.

Step 2 - Place in the fridge or somewhere cool for an hour or so ... or until the mixture as thickened and cooled. It will look very runny but it will thicken - don't panic!

Step 3 - Once cooled - whisk in the 100g sifted icing sugar.

Step 3 - Once cupcakes are cooled, and once ganache is ready either spread over the cupcakes or put in a piping bag and pipe onto the cupcakes. Sprinkle with sea salt for decoration.

Have you ever tried such an odd combination ... dark chocolate I find is always bitter but they tasted good. Let me know if you have been making any cupcakes in the comments below and what your favourite flavour is.

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