Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Ferrero Rocher Inspired Mini Cupcakes
While in the shops the other day, I noticed that there were more than usual amount of Ferrero Rocher stacked up on the shelves. A sign that Christmas is approaching. I went home feeling inspired to make cupcakes that taste like Ferrero Rocher, and I happen to have the perfect cake and frosting recipes for that.
These mini-cupcakes are made up of a delicious chocolate cake base topped with a creamy Nutella frosting. In each cupcake hides a little surprise (the best bit)- a teaspoon of Nutella and a whole roasted hazelnut.
I have deliberately made these cupcakes bite size. Not because I tend to prefer mini-cupcakes over the full size ones, and that mini-cupcakes are so much cuter. But with the mini-cupcakes, we will be able to get all the flavours and textures of the chocolate cake, frosting, nutella and hazelnut together with just one bite. It is really like eating a cake version of the Ferrero Rocher.
The chocolate cake is adapted from Miette’s double chocolate cake. I love this chocolate cake as much as the perfect chocolate cake that I blogged about several weeks ago. This chocolate cake is just as moist and soft, and most importantly, very chocolaty. However, it’s not as easy to prepare and involves a couple more dirty bowls. But please don’t let this put you off because it is a really good chocolate cake and well worth the effort.
I got the recipe for the nutella frosting from Sweetapolita. This frosting is so creamy, fluffy and nutella-y (I make that word up. But you got what I mean right?). I literally had to stop myself from pipping the frosting straight into my mouth. It's so good.
Ferrero Rocher Inspired Mini Cupcakes
(Chocolate cupcakes adapted from Miette's double chocolate cake,
Nutella frosting from Sweetapolita)
Makes about 48 mini cupcakes
For the chocolate cupcakes
185 grams all-purpose flour
110 grams natural unsweetened cocoa powder (not dutch process)
6 grams of baking soda
2 grams of baking powder
Pinch of salt
55 grams 70% dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup (250ml) of boiling water
1 cup (250ml) of buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1/2 cup (125ml) of vegetable oil
300 grams of caster sugar
For the nutella frosting
225 grams unsalted butter, softened but cool
190 grams icing sugar, sifted
2 teaspoons (10 ml) pure vanilla extract
125 grams 70% dark chocolate, chopped, melted and slightly cooled
100 grams Nutella
1 tablespoon (15 ml) milk
pinch of salt
You will also need 48 teaspoons of nutella and 48 whole hazelnuts.
To make chocolate cupcakes:
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius (or 160 degrees celsius fan-forced). Line mini-cupcakes/mufin pans with baking cases.
Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a bowl and set aside.
Put the chocolate in a heatproof bowl and pour the boiling water over it. Whisk until the chocolate is melted. Let the mixture cool for 15 minutes.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the buttermilk and vanilla. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk the eggs on high speed (I use #6 on my KitchenAid mixer) until foamy, about 2 minutes. Reduce the speed to low (#2 on KitchenAid mixer) and slowly in the oil, whisking until combined, about 30 seconds. Raise the speed to medium (#4 on KitchenAid mixer) and whisk until fully incorporated, about 30 seconds longer.
Reduce the speed to low and slowly pour the cooled chocolate mixture into the egg mixture. Slowly pour in the buttermilk and vanilla mixture. Add the sugar and whisk until the batter is smooth and liquid, about 2 minutes.
Stop the mixer. Remove the bowl and add the sifted dry ingredients and mix until just incorporated, preferably by hand, lifting and folding in from the bottom center. Using a rubber spatula, scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix again just briefly by hand. The batter may still look a little lumpy, but stop mixing.
Pour the batter through a medium-mesh sieve into a large measuring cup or bowl to remove any lumps. Press against the solids in the sieve with a rubber spatula to push through as much batter as possible, then discard the lumps. Divide the batter between the prepared pans. Bake until the tops spring back when lightly pressed and a tester inserted in the centers comes out clean, about 15-20 minutes.
To make nutella frosting:
In a bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, combine the icing sugar and butter and beat on low speed (#2 on KitchenAid mixer) for about 1 minute.
Add vanilla, and beat on low speed until well combined. Add the melted and slightly cooled chocolate and beat on medium speed (#4 on KitchenAid mixer) until smooth, about 2 minutes).
Add the Nutella, milk and pinch of salt, and beat on med-high speed for another minute.
Cut a hole in centre of each cake, fill with 1 teaspoon of nutella, and gently push in a hazelnut into the nutella.
Spoon the frosting into a piping bag fitted with a star tip and pipe swirls onto the cupcake.