Saturday, December 11, 2010

Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes

The holiday season is in full swing! I had three Christmas parties to go to in one night. I love holiday parties…looking at the Christmas décor, listening to the sounds of the season, eating some fabulous foods…but for some reason, on this particular Friday, I couldn’t quite get into the holiday spirit. Could it be because it is so cold outside (and inside, too) that I was dreading leaving my humble abode to run in and out of these events on three separate occasions? Or perhaps it is because I had such a long week and Friday evening parties don’t allow time for a nap. Gosh I sound old. I cut on my Sounds of Christmas playlist on my iPod to get in the mood…that helped a lot!

My first party was an annual Christmas party with a group of women I have come to adore over the last two years. We each bring a dish, open our Secret Santa gifts, finalize a community service project to assist someone less fortunate during the holiday season, and have lots of grins and giggles…and libations too! My contribution is always dessert. And I wanted to do something different that made me think of the holidays. So I decided on some Chocolate Peppermint cupcakes. I was thankful for an excuse to cut the stove on to get some additional heat generated. The temperature was 34 but it felt like half that. Brrrrrr.

Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes

1 cup packed brown sugar
6 tablespoons butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350°.

Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Place brown sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour mixture to sugar mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour. Stir in vanilla flavoring.

Spoon batter into 18 muffin cups lined with paper liners. Bake for 12 minutes or until cupcakes spring back when touched lightly in the center. Cool in pan 10 minutes on a wire rack; remove from pan.

Peppermint Frosting

2 cups powdered sugar
4 ounces cream cheese
1/8 teaspoon peppermint extract
16 hard peppermint candies, finely crushed (about 1/3 cup)

Combine powdered sugar, cream cheese, and peppermint extract in a mixing bowl. Frost cupcakes. Garnish with peppermint candy.

All photographs are actual pictures of the recipe listed, prepared by Virtually Everything Sweet, and cannot be used without the owner’s consent.

1 comment:

  1. Ok Patrice...I think this is something I can make :)