It may come as a surprise to you, but I can be seriously clumsy in the kitchen – especially when baking. I’d prefer to improvise than measure in any situation and I really dislike reading directions. That is why I love crumbles and cobblers – it leaves a little more room for mess-ups.
This is where good friends like Masha come in. She is seriously detail oriented and is the perfect helper in the kitchen (ironically she is baking a cake for my pup’s 1st birthday party as I type). For me, good kitchen comrades include three crucial qualities:
- They drink wine while they cook.
- They gossip while they cook.
- They don’t hesitate stepping in when I am about to make a big mistake (like overfilling the cupcake tins).
Masha came over the night before my Blogiversary to help make cupcakes and share some wine and gossip before the big night. I won’t tell you the gossip – but I will share the recipe. We made two batches of Ina’s Chocolate Ganache Cupcakes over a bottle of pinot grigio. The cupcakes are dense, delicious and I heard someone even at 5 at the party (remember, this isn’t a gossip column!).
Ina’s Chocolate Ganache Cupcakes
- 1/4 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
- 11 fluid ounces Hershey’s chocolate syrup
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon instant coffee granules
For the ganache:
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 8 ounces good semisweet chocolate chips
- 1/2 teaspoon instant coffee granules
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a muffin pan with paper liners.
Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, 1 at a time. Mix in the chocolate syrup and vanilla. Add the flour and coffee granules and mix until just combined. Don’t overbeat, or the cupcakes will be tough.
Scoop the batter into the muffin cups and bake for 30 minutes, or until just set in the middle. Don’t overbake! Let cool thoroughly in the muffin pan.
For the ganache, cook the heavy cream, chocolate chips, and instant coffee in the top of a double boiler over simmering water until smooth and warm, stirring occasionally.
Dip the tops of the cupcakes into the ganache. Do not refrigerate