Sunday, January 29, 2012

Chocolate Malt Cupcakes with Marshmallow Filling

I have a problem.  I literally cannot go a week without baking.  Last week, I thought I was going to be able to go without making something-- I had to work all day Saturday and on Sunday I decided to start training for the 9K I signed up for in March (I have obviously lost my mind).  I was tired, I was sore...and yet the oven was calling my name.  Luckily, I had ingredients on hand to make dairy-free brownies for little miss.  This weekend, it's cupcakes.  The people at work are going to hate me tomorrow at lunch. :)

These are, for the most part, very modest cupcakes.  There's no hugely in-your-face flavors-- the frosting is very sweet and chocolatey, but it's balanced by a really mild chocolate cake and the very light marshmallow cream in the middle.  I didn't love the marshmallow cream for this-- it's good, but I think I can find a better recipe for the next time.  I had to doctor it quite a bit to get it to actually taste like anything.  Also, I made a half recipe of cupcakes and a whole recipe of frosting and had WAAAAY too much left over.  I've halved the frosting recipe below, so you won't have an insane amount at the end, like I did. 

Chocolate Malt Cupcakes with Marshmallow Cream Filling
(Inspired by recipe from The Pastry Affair)

Chocolate Malt Cupcakes
(From Martha Stewart's Cupcakes)
Makes approximately 15 cupcakes

1 1/8 cup all-purpose flour
3/8 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3/8 cup packed light-brown sugar
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup milk
5/8 cup malted milk powder
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, both sugars, baking soda, and salt.  In a large liquid measuring cup, whisk together the milk and malted milk powder until powder is dissolved.

Add the oil and the milk mixture to the flour mixture in the bowl.  Beat until combined.  Add eggs one at a time, beating until  incoporated.  Scrape the bowl as needed.  Add sour cream and vanilla, and beat until just combined.

Line the cupcake pans with liners.  Fill each halfway (these cupcakes definitely rise!) and bake for approximately 20 minutes, rotating halfway through.  Cupcakes are done when a toothpick/cake tester inserted in the middle comes out clean. 

Allow the cupcakes to cool on a wire rack, then core the cupcakes in preparation for filling.

Toasted Marshmallow Filling
(Adapted from The Pastry Affair)

8 large marshmallows
3/4 cup marshmallow fluff
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
3/4 cup confectioners sugar
2 1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Place marshmallows on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Broil until golden brown.  Watch carefully!  You don't want burned marshmallows-- good on s'mores, but not so good in filling.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine toasted marshmallows, fluff, vegetable shortening, sugar, and vanilla extract.  Beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy.  Add more sugar, vanilla, and fluff to taste, if necessary. 

Fill the cored cupcakes with the marshmallow filling.

Chocolate Malt Frosting
(From The Curvy Carrot)

1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp salt
2 cups confectioners sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup malted milk powder
5 Tbsp milk

In a large bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine butter, vanilla, and salt.  Beat at medium-high speed until light and fluffy.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the confectioners sugar, the cocoa powder, and the malted milk powder. 

Add the dry ingredients to the butter in three additions.  Beat until incorporated, then add the milk following each addition of the dry ingredients.  Scrape the bowl as needed, making sure that the dry ingredients are thoroughly mixed.  Beat until smooth and creamy.  Frost the filled cupcakes, using an offset spatula, bag and star tip, or a ziploc with the corner cut off. 

Garnish, if desired, with Whopper candies.

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