Chocolate can never go wrong for desserts. But chocolate and mint? That’s a double winner right there. I’ve always loved mint chocolate (you know those After Eight and Andes chocolate mint thins? I used to devour lots at one go, regardless of the time of the day haha). Funny though, I seldom baked any chocolate and mint treats – so I guess it’s time to correct that with these Mint Chocolate Cupcakes, frosted with a luscious and creamy Chocolate-Mint Swiss Meringue Frosting.
These Mint Chocolate Cupcakes are a one-bowl treat – use one mixing bowl to make the batter (no mixer is needed – double bonus here if you ask me), and while the cupcakes are baking, rinse and dry the mixing bowl and use to make the Swiss meringue frosting. If you find the frosting too much of a hassle, eat the cakes plain or frost with some peppermint chocolate ganache instead (included in the recipe as well).
The cakes themselves are soft and moist with a nice peppermint flavour – luckily I added only 1/4 teaspoon of the peppermint extract, I originally wanted to use 1/2 teaspoon of it! So I decided to add even lesser peppermint extract for the frosting as I don’t want to end up feeling like I’m eating toothpaste. 😛
This time round there are only step-by-step photos for the Mint Chocolate Cupcakes sans frosting, because I got lazy (oops). Maybe I’ll share the Swiss meringue frosting on a separate post next time – I think it deserves a post on its own!
|1) Whisk together cocoa powder and boiling water until a paste is formed.||2) Whisk in the cold yogurt or sour cream to cool the cocoa mixture.|
|3) Whisk in the oil, egg and peppermint extract until fully incorporated.||4) Whisk in the sugar, the sugar won't dissolve completely but it's okay.|
|5) Add in the flour, baking powder and salt and whisk gently until the dry ingredients are incorporated. Do not overmix. Use a spatula to scrape the bottom of the mixing bowl a few times to ensure all the ingredients are well-mixed together.||6) Scoop 1/4-cup (60ml) of batter into each liner - you will get about 8 mini cakes. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes.|
If you like mint like me, check out these recipes!
- 35 grams Dutch-processed cocoa powder (I recommend Varlhona)
- 45 grams hot boiling water
- 65 grams cold yogurt or sour cream (Greek or normal is fine)
- 80 grams canola oil
- 1 large egg (can be cold from the refrigerator or at room temperature)
- ¼ teaspoon peppermint extract
- 100 grams caster sugar
- 50 grams all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- Pinch of salt
- Chocolate-Mint Swiss Meringue Frosting
- Preheat oven to 175C/350F. Line a muffin tin with paper liners, set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, use a wire whisk and whisk together cocoa powder and boiling water until a paste is formed (this blooms the chocolate, intensifying the chocolate flavour). Whisk in the cold yogurt or sour cream to cool the cocoa mixture. Whisk in the oil, egg and peppermint extract until fully incorporated. Whisk in the sugar, the sugar won't dissolve completely but it's okay.
- Add in the flour, baking powder and salt and whisk gently until the dry ingredients are incorporated. Do not overmix. Use a spatula to scrape the bottom of the mixing bowl a few times to ensure all the ingredients are well-mixed together.
- Scoop ¼-cup (60ml) of batter into each liner - you will get about 8 mini cakes. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean and the top of the cake bounced back when touched gently.
- Let the cake cool completely before frosting with Chocolate-Mint Swiss Meringue Frosting.
- To make a whole cake, grease a 6-inch round cake tin with butter and line the bottom with parchment paper. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean and the top of the cake bounced back when touched gently. Let cool completely before frosting the top and sides with the Chocolate-Mint Swiss Meringue Frosting.
- If you'd like to frost the cake with chocolate ganache instead, heat 100 grams cream (minimum 30% fat) to simmering and pour over 100 grams finely chopped dark chocolate. Let sit for 5 minutes, then stir until the chocolate has melted. Add a few drops of peppermint extract if desired. Let cool until the ganache has thickened before spreading on top of cupcakes.
- 30 grams egg white (1 large egg white)
- 50 grams caster sugar
- 85 grams unsalted butter, softened and diced (see Naggy Note)
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- ⅛ teaspoon peppermint extract
- 2 tablespoons Dutch-processed cocoa powder, sifted
- Get ready a small pot and a heatproof mixing bowl that can fit snugly on the small pot. Fill the small pot with water until the surface of the water is 1-inch away from the bottom of the mixing bowl. Bring the water to a boil and turn down to a simmer.
- Combine egg white and sugar in the heatproof mixing bowl. Place the heatproof bowl over the pot of simmering water and whisk with a wire whisk constantly until the mixture reaches 60C/140F. (If you don't have a thermometer, use a really fresh egg white - best is pasteurised - and whisk until you cannot feel any more sugar lumps.)
- Remove the mixing bowl from the pot of simmering water and using an electric hand mixer (a stand mixer won't work as the quantity is too little), whisk the mixture on medium speed until it forms a stiff meringue. Continue beating on low speed until the meringue has cooled down - the mixing bowl should be barely warm to the touch.
- Turn the mixer speed up to medium again and add in the diced butter tablespoonful by tablespoonful, beating until the butter has been incorporated before adding the next spoonful.
- Once all the butter has been added in, keep beating until the mixture comes together into a nice-looking buttercream. Turn the speed down to low and beat in the vanilla, peppermint extract and cocoa powder. Taste and add more peppermint extract if desired. Frost as desired.