Sunday, December 4, 2011

Après-Ski Hot Cocoa Cupcakes~

Because I live to make you happy: A picturesque horse-drawn sleigh-ride over crunchy snow. A cozy, crackling, aromatic fire. Warm, rich and gooey chocolate cupcakes with a hint of
ancho chile pepper
spice. Dreamy holiday music and hot buttered rum on the side. A nostalgic combo that's hard to beat~especially with Frank Sinatra singing 'The Christmas Waltz' (below). Get your Holiday Season on!

Hot Chocolate "Cup" Cakes with Cocoa Whipped Cream

1 cup flour
1 cup granulated sugar, divided
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, divided
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons Chile Pepper, Ancho
1 teaspoon Gourmet Cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon Madagascar Vanilla Extract
1 cup boiling water

Cocoa Whipped Cream

3/4 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon Madagascar Vanilla Extract

1. For the Cakes, preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour cups. Place on large baking sheet.

2. Mix flour, 2/3 cup of the granulated sugar, 4 tablespoons of the cocoa powder, baking powder, ancho chile pepper, cinnamon and salt in large bowl. Stir in milk, oil and vanilla. Spoon the stiff batter evenly into prepared cups.

Mix remaining 1/3 cup granulated sugar and 2 tablespoons cocoa powder in small bowl. Sprinkle evenly over batter. Spoon 2 tablespoons boiling water into each cup—do not stir.

3. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until tops are dry to the touch. Cool cups slightly on wire rack.

4. For the Cocoa Whipped Cream, beat cream and confectioners' sugar in medium bowl with electric mixer on high speed until soft peaks form. Add cocoa powder and vanilla; beat until stiff peaks form.

Serve cakes in coffee cups while still warm with Cocoa Whipped Cream on top. Sprinkle with additional cinnamon, if desired.

Andre Rieu 'Sleigh Ride' music: HERE Frank Sinatra 'The Christmas Waltz' (Love!) HERE Enjoy!

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