Thursday, March 17, 2011

Guinness and Baileys Cupcakes

Happy St. Patty's day! Folks, let me tell ya, it doesn't get more Irish than this, and to be quite honest, it doesn't get much more decedent.  These cupcakes are luxurious. As in, I have ate one a day for the past 3 delicious days. Get the picture?
I actually made these cupcakes for one of Justin's very special co-workers. I hope she likes them! What's more, is that Justin was flying to Chicago this weekend and did not feel confident in his ability to get iced cupcakes to Chicago in one piece.  So whatever did we do? I taught him to ice cupcakes! He is going to kill me when he realizes I posted this on the internet, but it is a testimony to how much he loves me and how he is willing to maintain my good baking reputation. I am one lucky girl!
Any who, back to the cupcakes. These babies are magical!  The Guinness adds such a subtle flavor and makes the chocolate more rich an delicious. The baileys is an undertone to the ganache, but it really comes to life in the frosting. Combine them all together and are just going to have to make them yourself to full appreciate these babies.

For the Guinness chocolate cupcakes:

1 cup Guinness (I used Draught)
16 tbsp. unsalted butter
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar

1½ tsp. baking soda
¾ tsp. salt

2 large eggs

2/3 cup sour cream

For the Bailey’s ganache filling:

8 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
 (I used ghirardelli 60% cacao) 
2/3 cup heavy cream

2 tbsp. butter, at room temperature

2 tsp. Bailey’s Irish cream

For the Bailey’s buttercream frosting:
 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature

3-4 cups confectioners’ sugar

4-8 tbsp. Bailey’s Irish cream

To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350° F.  Line two cupcake pans with paper liners.  Combine Guinness and butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat until butter is metled. Wisk in the cocoa powder until smooth.  Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt.  In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the eggs and sour cream to blend.  Add the stout-butter mixture and beat just to combine.  Mix in the dry ingredients on low speed just until incorporated.  Divide the batter evenly between the cupcake liners, filling them about 2/3 to ¾ full.  Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 17 minutes.  Allow to cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the ganache filling, place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl.  Heat the cream in a small saucepan until simmering, then pour it over the chocolate.  Let sit for one minute and then whisk until smooth.  If the chocolate is not completely melted, place the bowl over a double boiler or give it a very short burst in the microwave (15-20 seconds).  Add the butter and Bailey’s and stir until combined.
Set aside to let the ganache cool until it is thick enough to be piped. Meanwhile, cut out a portion from the center of the cupcake using a small paring knife.  Once the ganache has reached the correct consistency, transfer it to a piping bag fitted with a wide tip and pipe it into the cupcakes. Do this quickly or the ganache will set

To make the frosting, place the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.  Beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.  Gradually add the powdered sugar until it is all incorporated.  Mix in the Bailey’s until smooth.  Add more if necessary until the frosting has reached a good consistency for piping or spreading.  Frost the cupcakes as desired.

Source: Annies Eats

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