The mochaliciousness

Some of my friends from my parenting group are getting together on February 12 for a cupcake party. Since I don't know whether I'll actually be able to attend, depending on the status of my uterus and heretofore unborn child, I'm thinking of this particular party as my consolation prize in case I do go a week past my due date. In any case, I want to bring mocha cupcakes, but I needed to do a test batch, mostly because I had cupcakes on the brain and didn't want to wait three weeks to eat them.

I crack myself up when I decide to bake a whole batch of something, then start looking around to figure out who's going to help us eat it. Some of these cupcakes are going to friends tomorrow, and the plate of mini cupcakes in the photo are going to church on Sunday. Various people at church will occasionally bring a plate of muffins, banana bread, a coffee cake, etc., for people to munch on with their coffee before or after the service, so I'll just add my little Mardi Gras cupcakes to that table and see what happens. I'm pretty sure I'll be taking home an empty plate.

Here are the recipes I used:

Black Cake (from Nina Tedder, a family friend)

2 sticks softened butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
2 cups flour
1 cup warm coffee
1 tsp vanilla
pinch of salt

Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and beat until combined. Add cocoa and baking soda, beat, then add some of the flour and beat well. Add coffee, remaining flour, vanilla, and salt, and beat until all ingredients are combined, scraping sides of bowl if necessary. Bake in pans or muffin tins at 350 F until done (depends on size of pans/muffins-- be sure to test with a toothpick).

[This cake recipe is for 2 layers or 1 sheet cake, but it ended up making 12 regular cupcakes and a whole bunch of mini cupcakes, since I wanted some of both. The regular cupcakes took about 15 minutes, the minis about 10, though you should probably just check them with a toothpick anyway.]

Mocha Icing (from The Joy of Cooking)

1/4 to 1/2 cup softened butter (I used 1/4 cup)
1 2/3 cups powdered sugar
1 to 2 Tbsp cocoa
1/8 tsp salt
3 Tbsp strong hot coffee
1 tsp vanilla, almond flavoring, or rum (I used vanilla)

Beat butter until smooth. Add powdered sugar and cocoa gradually, blending until creamy. Add salt and coffee, beat for 2 minutes. When icing is cool, add vanilla, beat until blended. Let stand for 5 minutes, then beat again and spread on cake or cupcakes. Makes about 1 cup (which was enough to frost a whole batch of cupcakes).

[The icing ends up hardening after it sits, so it's best to frost the cupcakes and do any decorating right away. I'll have to remember this for our cupcake party, because we were going to let the kids decorate some, but that may not work so well on crusty icing. Maybe I'll bring the icing in a sealed container and frost them right before we let the kids do their thing with the sprinkles and the jelly beans and such.]

So far, these have been approved by everyone who has tried them. Kent would like another one, no matter how many he's already had.

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Oh, goodie! This means I get to taste some of the second batch! (Will you make them even if you can't go to the party?)
Well, if I can't go to the party, that will mean that I'm newly postpartum and am recovering, so maybe you'll be making them instead. ;)
they look yummy :D
Yum! Those look delicious! You are better than I--I usually don't make test batches, so everyone else ends up being a test subject.
I can't believe you were able to get all this info on your blog so quickly. The cupcakes are so festive! I know they will be enjoyed by all who encounter them. Yeah, for nesting--I know Dean will be here soon.
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