Thursday, August 23, 2012

Black Bottom Cupcakes

I had my first black bottom when I moved to Baltimore years ago and instantly fell in love. Where had these amazing treats been all my life?!  It only seemed appropriate to finally make them when I had a visitor from Maryland who understood how good they are.  We used to work together and the caterers would bring these as dessert for lunch meetings and other events. These delectable bites combine some of my favorite flavors, chocolate cake with chocolate chip cream cheese filling...can't get much better than that. My filling was little bit liquidy and turned it into a topping instead of a dollop but tasted just as delicious. I will definitely try the minis next time.

Black-Bottom Cupcakes
(Source: David Lebovitz The Great Book of Chocolate , as seen on Brown Eyed Baker)
Yields: 12 cupcakes or 30 minis

For the Filling:
8 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
2 oz. bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

For the Cupcakes:
1½ cups all-purpose flour
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
5 Tablespoons naturally unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch-process)
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup water
1/3 cup unflavored vegetable oil
1 Tablespoon white or cider vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Make the Filling:
Beat together the cream cheese, granulated sugar, and egg until smooth. Stir in chopped chocolate pieces and set aside.

Make the Cupcakes:
1. Adjust the rack to the center of the oven and preheat to 350°F (175°C). Butter a 12-cup muffin tin, or line the tin with paper muffin cups.

2. In a medium bowl sift together the flour, brown sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl mix together the water, oil, vinegar, and vanilla.

3. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and stir in the wet ingredients, stirring just until smooth. Stir any longer and you will over mix the batter and end up with less-than-tender cupcakes.
4. Divide the batter among the muffin cups. Spoon a few Tablespoons of the filling into the center of each cupcake, dividing the filling evenly. This will fill the cups almost completely, which is fine.
5. Bake for 25 minutes, or until the tops are slightly golden brown and the cupcakes feel springy when gently pressed. These moist treats will keep unrefrigerated for 2 to 3 days if stored in an airtight container.

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