This probably means my weekends are lame, but one of the highlights of this past one was finding big containers of fresh raspberries at the store (another was finishing a hat I was knitting for the baby… yes I’m 86 years old). As soon as I got them home I had a really hard time narrowing down what I wanted to do with them, but I knew it had to involve chocolate. Now that the school year is pretty much over, I’m finding I have WAY more time to bake and go to the gym – two things that balance each other out pretty nicely!
I was initially drawn to chocolate cupcakes with some kind of raspberry filling, and chocolate ganache on top, but when I found the recipe for chocolate raspberry ganache in The Secrets of Baking, I knew there was nothing else that would be more appealing. I wanted it to really stand out, so instead of making a chocolate cupcake, I made a buttermilk genoise from the same book.
The cupcakes initially looked like a complete failure when I pulled them from the oven. They pulled away from the sides of the pan and there were huge indentations in the tops. I found online that a bunch of other people had this problem, but realized it was actually kind of perfect because it made an ideal place to pipe the ganache.
I may try experimenting with other genoise recipes in the future, but I actually loved the way these turned out, and the flavor and texture were perfect (which to me is more important than how they look anyway). The only change I made to the ganache recipe was using chocolate chips because I had them on hand, and adding heavy cream while whipping to lighten the texture. The only thing I might change is to make 1 1/4 or 1 1/2 recipes next time, because I only had enough for a small rosette on each cupcake.
And if you happen to have any leftover raspberries or want to do something a little healthier, this mornings smoothie included a bunch of raspberries, a frozen banana, almond milk, chocolate protein powder, and chia seeds, and it was almost as good as a cupcake!
(adapted from The Secrets of Baking by Sherry Yard)
makes 24 cupcakes
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
4 large eggs
6 ounces butter, melted
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 tsp vanilla
Preheat the oven to 350 F and line 24 cupcake tins with paper liners.
Sift the flour, salt, and baking powder together three times.
Set a saucepan of water over medium heat and bring to a simmer (turn down the heat if it starts to boil). Put the eggs and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer and set it over the simmering water, whisking with a wire whisk constantly until a thermometer reads 110 F.
Using the whisk attachment of the stand mixer, beat the eggs and sugar on high for about 6 minutes, or until pale and fluffy and a ribbon forms when drizzled from a spatula. Beat for an additional 2 minutes on medium, then turn to low and mix in the melted butter.
Fold in 1/3 of the dry ingredients using a wire whisk. Add 1/3 of the buttermilk and fold gently. Repeat with remaining flour and buttermilk. Gently stir in the vanilla.
Divide evenly among the cupcake tins, filling each nearly to the top. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until golden on top. The cupcake should not stay indented when you press gently on it with your finger.
Cool in the pans for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely (the tops may cave in, but that’s a great place to pipe ganache!)
When completely cool, top with the whipped ganache.
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
4 oz butter, melted
1 cup fresh raspberries, pureed and strained (about 1/3 cup puree), at room temperature
1/2 cup heavy cream
Melt the chocolate chips in the top of a double boiler. Using a rubber spatula, stir in the butter until smooth. Stir in the raspberry puree and mix until smooth. Transfer to a stand mixer with the whisk attachment and beat on medium high until the mixture is room temperature. Pour in the heavy cream and continue whipping until stiff enough to pipe.
Pipe a rosette onto each cupcake then top with a raspberry. Store in the refrigerator.