21 November 2008
On Martha Stewart....
I've never been a huge fan of Martha Stewart though she often has great ideas and I know she has done wonders for the DIY home decor industry. She's definitely more likeable since her prison stint. I've maybe seen her show 4-5 times; there is one in particular that sticks in my mind where she was preparing the traditional French wedding cake, la Pièce Montée, or Croquembouche (disclaimer: I did not make this!), and broke out a blow-torch (!) to finish the caramel glaze that covers the puff pastry. As if her average viewer keeps a blow torch in their kitchen for just this very reason!
I had recently read about her One-Bowl Chocolate Cupcakes and thought I'd give them a whirl. While the ingredient list is quite similar to the recipe I use in my cupcakes, hers calls for vegetable oil whereas I normally use butter. I was curious to see how these would bake up. When cooled after removing from the oven, my testers (myself, husband and 2 kids) found these to be filled with chocolatey goodness. The oil makes them moist and springy, more like a sponge than a cake. Martha recommends storing them one day in the fridge or up to a week in the freezer (Quel Sacrilège!). After 2 days, they did seem a little too greasy though the chocolate was definitely more gooey and rich. We topped them with a raspberry buttercream (see above) and the flavor combination was unbelievably yummy!
Martha Stewart's One-Bowl Chocolate Cupcakes
Makes 2 dozen
* 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
* 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1 1/2 cups sugar
* 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
* 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
* 3/4 teaspoon salt
* 2 large eggs
* 3/4 cup warm water
* 3/4 cup buttermilk
* 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
* 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake pans with liners; set aside. In a large mixing bowl, sift together cocoa, flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add the eggs, warm water, buttermilk, oil, and vanilla; mix batter until smooth, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of bowl to assure batter is well mixed.
2. Divide batter evenly among liners, filling each about one-third full. Bake until tops spring back when touched, about 20 minutes, rotating pan once if needed. Transfer to a wire rack; let cool completely.
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