Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Chocolate Cupcakes

When I was little, my mom baked cupcakes like crazy - for birthdays, for bible club, for sunday school, for scripture union, for school, for friends, etc. They were delicious little vanilla things, to be sure, but the problem was that I have always been a chocolate lover of note.

Enter celiac disease, and my taste for chocolate grew even more rapidly because, before there were fantastic gluten-free flour mixes (the correct ratio of gf flours is paramount for a successful outcome), there were excellent Lindt chocolates that were gluten-free.

Times have changed in recent years, with a greater variety of finely-milled gf flours available in South Africa. Therefore, more and more often, I find myself turning my hand to baking as a weekend hobby, as well as a healthier option to store-bought sweeties (I figure, at least I know what I'm putting in it and how much!)

It was with great joy that I stumbled upon a blog called He-Eats while googling for chocolate cupcake recipes, and boy did I hit the mother load! Obviously, I had to de-gluten them, but nevertheless, these cupcakes came out so moist and chocolatey that it's difficult to do them justice in terms of a description (and they get even yummier if stored in an airtight container overnight in the fridge).

So now I get to have my (gf) (chocolate) (cup)cake and eat it too!

Chocolate Cupcake Recipe
Adapted from an online Martha Stewart recipe
(made 21 cupcakes)

Cupcake Ingredients:

  • ¾ cup (187.5ml) cocoa powder
  • ¾ cup (187.5ml) flour (Nature's Choice GF Cake Flour works reliably)
  • ½ tsp (2.5ml) baking powder OR ½ tsp (2.5ml) bicarb (acidity of sour cream/yoghurt is sufficient to activate the bicarb)
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¾ cup (1½ US sticks = 169.5g) unsalted butter at room temp
  • 1 cup (250ml) caster sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tsp (5ml) vanilla extract
  • ½ cup (125ml) sour cream OR full-cream yoghurt (I have made a batch using each option, and the change to yoghurt does not affect the moistness of the final product)


  • Preheat oven to 350F / 175C. Line 12-Cup muffin pan with cupcake liners.
  • Sift together the Cocoa, Flour, Baking Powder and salt into a medium bowl; set aside.
  • Using a mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  • With the mixer on low add the flour mixture in two additions alternating with the sour cream .
  • Divide the batter into cups filling about 1/2 full. Bake until a toothpick comes out clean (original recipe says 20-25 mins, but mine only took 15 mins at 175 degrees Celsius!)
  • Cool in the pan for 5 minutes then transfer the cakes to cool completely, on a wire rack. Ice the cupcakes with ganache or your icing of choice once fully cooled. Typically, ganache is dark chocolate (50 - 70% cocoa solids) and cream in a 2:1 ratio, slowly melted over a very low heat, sometimes finished with a dot of butter for a nice sheen.


Post-icing & dusted with cocoa powder...