Wednesday 24 October 2007


chocolate cupcake with chocolate buttercream & home-made royal icing violet

We were craving some chocolate here and seeing as I had leftover ganache in the freezer from the Macaron War, I thought I'd throw together some chocolate cupcakes to go with a chocolate buttercream.
chocolate cupcakes, eagerly awaiting decorations

The cupcake recipe I used has vegetable oil instead of butter in it and this makes for a moist cupcake that keeps well in the fridge. It stays moist for a few days and upon taking it out of the fridge to warm to room temperature for serving, it still tastes fresh and not dry and hard like a butter cupcake.
silky smooth chocolate ganache buttercream

The buttercream I made was kind of spur of the moment and I didn't measure too accurately. It turned out fabulous. The chocolate flavour pronounced was not too rich (like the ganache was) and the buttercream was smooth, silky and not cloyingly sweet.
the moist, tender chocolate cupcake's innards...perfect ratio of buttercream to cupcake


100 grams all purpose flour
225 grams granulated sugar
45 grams good quality cocoa powder
1 t baking soda
1/2 t baking powder
1/2 t pink himalayan salt
1 egg
1/4 cup (60 ml) vegetable oil
1/2 cup (118 ml) buttermilk
1 t pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup (118 ml) hot coffee
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Prepare cupcake pans by lining with large paper liners. For this recipe you will need 18.
  • Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed until combined.
  • In another bowl, combine the buttermilk, oil, eggs and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry.
  • With the mixer still on low, add the coffee and stir just to combine, scraping the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Pour batter into cupcake liners only half-way full.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean.
  • Cool for 10 minutes and removes to cool completely on a rack.


6 oz (170 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups (220 grams) confectioners' sugar
2 t milk
1/2 cup (118 ml) ganache

  • In a standing mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until it is smooth and creamy
  • Sift the confectioners' sugar a couple of tablespoons at a time over the butter and continue beating until the mixture is light and fluffy
  • Add 2 teaspoons of milk and continue beating to lighten the mixture
  • Add the ganache to the buttercream and mix until thoroughly combined and smooth


Patricia Scarpin said...

They look wonderful and I wish I could have some!

Cakebrain said...

Thanks for the kind comment! I polished off 3 today (as dessert after every major meal!) They're so good!

Anonymous said...

Wow! Your cupcakes look really yummy and choclicious, heehee, love your frosting too! Its so silky and pretty What's the number of the piping tip u use?

Cakebrain said...

Hi Felicia,
I always like to use the Wilton 1M tip for frosting cupcakes. It makes huge swirls.

Anonymous said...

thank You for the recipe! i plan on making them for my Beloved this evening and i will start early so i can experiment. my plans are:

- use brown sugar for that dark chocolate experience
- sea salt since i don't have himalayan pink
- yeast instead of soda/powder
- olive oil = vegetable oil?
- hazelnut coffee

i'd like to find a way to put a truffle in the middle. mmmm!

i'll let You know how they comes out!

as for the frosting, well, looks like ganache *is* frosting, so i'll have to make a frosting to make the frosting from? hmmm... lol maybe buttercream w/cocoa powder?

ps: my mom's recipe for chocolate cake calls for "lard". can that be true? actual lard?

Cakebrain said...

I hope all works well...good luck with the experiment! A truffle in the middle sounds fantastic. I've done it myself and it's always a wondeful surprise to find MORE chocolate! Yah, lard. I've heard of using lard too in some recipes, but I prefer butter 'cause it's so much tastier! I'd do a swap.

Svarna said...


Thanks for sharing your recipes. Just wondering, where you call for half a cup of ganache - is that ganache with one part cream and two parts plain chocolate, or one part cream and one part plain chocolate? Would be interested to know, would love to try this!

Also, in summary is it one part buttercream and one part ganache? or some other ratio?

Thanks so much!

Cakebrain said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cakebrain said...

I had prepared the ganache using this recipe from my blog:
ganache recipe
I used 1/2 cup of this ganache and added it to the buttercream recipe on this post, as stated.

jn said...

Hi! These cupcakes look amazing and I'd like to make these for a family function tomorrow.

Quick clarification needed:

Is 't' = teaspoon?

Cakebrain said...

yes, lower case "t" is teaspoon and "T" is tablespoon.

meriam from moorea said...

your cupcakes are really really cute and sound so yummy!!
i 'm planning to make a lot of them for my daughter's scholl(she loves when i bring some cakes at school!!)
my question is about the buttercream ganache!
as far as i live in a hot and humid place,do you think it' s gonna stay firm till i deliver the cupcakes at shool ?(i have a 20mn drive to go there!)
do you have any recommendations about frosting on cupcakes (buttercream ,creamcheese or ganache) that can stand hot and humid weather? i mean how can i keep them firm,do i have to freeze them whith the frosting few hours before delivering them or wathever???
thank you to share your experience

Cakebrain said...

the most stable buttercream actually doesn't use butter at all. You could use a solid white vegetable shortening (like Crisco. It is simply shortening and confectioner's sugar. If you look up the Wilton site, you will get a pretty good recipe. It pipes buttercream roses and will never melt in hot weather. Other than that, if you have air conditioning, I suppose the Martha Stewart Swiss Meringue Buttercream might hold up...but I wouldn't use it if you don't have air conditioning. If you freeze it, it might work, but you have to make sure that the timing is exact otherwise the kiddies will be eating frozen cupcakes! I wouldn't use this particular ganache buttercream. It wouldn't last 10 minutes in heat and humidity.

1st choice: shortening-based buttercream
2nd choice: real butter and confectioner's sugar (maybe frozen after frosting?)
3rd choice: Swiss Meringue Buttercream

meriam from moorea said...

thank you very much for your answer,it helps me a lot!!!! i m gonna try the shortening and freeze the buttercream as well,i ll see which is the best (unfortunately,no air con' here!!!)
anyway,thks a lot and i follow your blog whith great pleasure!!
iaorana from french polynesia(tahiti)

TBKS said...

Just found (and LOVE)your blog and recipes. I am going to attempt the butterflies tonight, in fact.

One tip that somewhat at a local bakery taught me about cupcakes, buttercream and hot weather: if you want to use butter in your buttercream (or cream cheese or ganache) always beat in a tiny bit of water (1/4 or 1/2 tsp) in the buttercream to help create a bit of an exterior crust and to maintain the piping edges. It changes the exterior consistency and texture of the frosting once it has set up, but the interior stays creamy and smooth. It's magic! Now I always do that to help "set" the frosting; especially when I am transporting the cupcakes.

I don't know that I would use that trick with a cake, as such. I tend to fuss more with cakes, and you'd end up pulling off the crust at every knife turn. But, it sure has me a lot more confident that after piping and transporting lots of cupcakes, they will look AND taste wonderful at the end of the ride!

Maya said...

They look great!! I would love to try the recipe but i'm from Austria and i regrettably don't know a few ingredients like f.e. ganache.
I tried to google it but from the descriptions only i can't imagine how this looks like when you buy it in a shop. Is it a fluid?

Best wishes

Cakebrain said...

Ganache is simply melted dark chocolate and whipping cream. It is of a thick consistency. I had leftover ganache from another recipe that I used. There are plenty of simple ganache recipes if you google it.

Amelie said...

Thanks for sharing this recipe. It was really good. I tried this on my second attempt at baking and it impressed my family. The bittersweet chocolate flavor is just right as well as the moist texture. Made me feel like i'm a pro at baking. :)However, i was having problems with the ganache buttercream, it melts even before i was able to pipe it. I guess i'm doing something wrong. But thanks again. Your site is great. i even added it to my favorites. :)

Cakebrain said...

If the buttercream is too soft, put your filled piping bag in the refrigerator for a while until it hardens up a bit...maybe 10 min

Anonymous said...

i would just like to ask on ow you made the hot coffee?
Thank you

Cakebrain said...

Make hot coffee as you would for drinking.
Either instant with hot water; or filtered or drip, espresso/Americano...whatever works for you!


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