Mini Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes

Standard

I saw a meme last year as Fall was turning into Winter to the effect of “You have had your day Pumpkin but soon Peppermint will rule the land!”  While I pretty much avoided the pumpkin spice craze this year I am embracing the peppermint.  Wholeheartedly!

Plus I love mini-cupcakes.  They are perfect to share with people and the perfect size to cram the whole thing in your mouth in one bite!  Not that any respectable adult person would do that.

An adult person would talk about the unexpected textures between moist chocolate cake, creamy icing, and crunch candy cane pieces.  But I won’t blame you if you just eat 4 or 5 after decorating the house in a holiday daze.

Mini Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes

adapted from The Smitten Kitchen

 

For the cupcakes

1 stick butter, at room temperature

1 cup dark brown sugar

1/3 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

1 cup buttermilk (or milk and lemon juice, see below)

1 tsp vanilla

1 1/4 cup flour

1 heaping cup unsweetened cocoa

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

 

For the frosting

(Yes, I made my own frosting.  It was good but… I don’t know. Maybe I just don’t like buttercream that much.  That is a sad fact but might be true. If you do like buttercream give this one a try.  It’s pretty good!)

1 stick butter, at room temperature

1 1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar

2 tbsp cream or half and half

1 tsp peppermint extract

Several small candy canes

 

Get some super cute mini-cupcake liners or just Pam the heck out of a mini-muffin tray.  Pre-heat the oven to 325.

Using a mixer (stand or hand is fine) cream the butter and sugars until it’s light in color and everything is well incorporated.

Add in your eggs one at a time, beating after each addition.  Be sure to remember to scrape down the sides regularly as well.

Finally, add in the vanilla and buttermilk.  It will look grainy and way too liquidly but that’s ok.

A note about buttermilk.  I don’t keep buttermilk on hand.  I will buy it special if I need a whole lot but most of the time I simply mix milk and lemon juice in the desired amount and let it sit for a few minutes.  Works great and no special trip to the store to get something which will just go bad sitting in your fridge! The conversion is 1 tsp lemon juice to 1 cup milk.

Sift in the flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

Mix until combined but don’t over-mix.

Scoop the batter into your prepared muffin tins and bake for 13-15 minutes.  When a toothpick comes out with only a few crumbs sticking to it they are done.

Let the cupcakes cool for five minutes in the muffin tin before removing them.  Allow them to cool completely.

Meanwhile you can make your icing!

Again, I used my stand mixer but I imagine a hand mixer should be fine.  Beat the butter with the confectioners sugar, adding one 1/2 a cup at a time. Be sure to scrape down the sides after each addition.

Once the sugar is fully incorporated add in the cream and peppermint extract.  Then, beat it really really well.

For a final delicious festive touch take a few mini-candy canes (though I am sure you could use full sized ones.  We just have a tiny table-top tree so we have tiny candy canes to go on it) and smash them with a rolling pin.  It is actually quite fun and good for stress or frustration.

Ice the cupcakes and sprinkle the tops with the crushed candy canes.

Refrigerate if you aren’t serving immediately to let the icing set.

Happy December!

 

Mini Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes

For the cupcakes

1 stick butter, at room temperature

1 cup dark brown sugar

1/3 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

1 cup buttermilk

1 tsp vanilla

1 1/4 cup flour

1 heaping cup unsweetened cocoa

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

For the frosting

1 stick butter, at room temperature

1 1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar

2 tbsp cream or half and half

1 tsp peppermint extract

Several small candy canes

 

Use the mini-cupcake liners or grease a mini-muffin tray.  Pre-heat the oven to 325.

Using a mixer cream the butter and sugars until everything is well incorporated.

Add in the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition.

Finally, add in the vanilla and buttermilk.

Sift in the flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

Mix until combined but don’t over-mix.

Scoop the batter into your prepared muffin tins and bake for 13-15 minutes.  When a toothpick comes out with only a few crumbs sticking to it they are done.

Let the cupcakes cool for five minutes in the muffin tin before removing them.  Allow them to cool completely.

To make the icing, beat the butter with the confectioners sugar, adding one 1/2 a cup at a time.

Once the sugar is fully incorporated add in the cream and peppermint extract and beat.

Take a few mini-candy canes and smash them with a rolling pin.

Ice the cupcakes and sprinkle the tops with the crushed candy canes.  Refrigerate if you aren’t serving immediately to let the icing set.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s