Those folks at America’s Test Kitchen – I just don’t know how they do it, or what I’d do without them! They’re working tirelessly, churning out great recipes for us, day in and day out. They’ve taught me probably 75% of what I’ve learned in the kitchen, the other 25% being owed to Alton Brown. Anywho, they’ve got a new cookbook on the shelves that gives our favorite comfort foods a revamp, making them a little bit more figure friendly. A few of my favorite bloggers have been sharing recipes, and when I saw this lightened-up chocolate cupcake – well, I just couldn’t resist giving it a try!
Now, if I hadn’t just told you they were low-fat – you’d honestly never know! Everyone that tried them enjoyed them, and there was nary a peep about them being low-fat. You honestly couldn’t tell! They were incredibly moist and chocolatey, and the frosting was delicious and rich – without being too sweet, like many frostings can. The secret to the cupcakes is the boiling water, which does a great job of “blooming” and releasing the flavors of the cocoa, but also adds moisture. And for the frosting, instead of copious amounts of butter being used – milk is the main component to bring everything together. Along with delicious bittersweet chocolate, and a small amount of butter to give a gorgeous sheen and richness to the frosting.
I’m definitely looking forward to trying more recipes out of this cookbook. I love to cut calories where I can, but refuse to sacrifice taste! I know I can always count on the good people at ATK to do just that for me! I hope everyone has a great weekend!
“Skinny” Chocolate Cupcakes
2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine
1/3 cup cocoa
3/4 tsp instant espresso powder
3/4 cup boiling water
3/4 cup bread flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
5 tablespoons canola oil
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the frosting:
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
7 tablespoons one-percent milk
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 ounce bittersweet chocolate, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners.
In a large bowl add the chocolate, cocoa, and espresso powder. Pour the boiling water over the top and allow the mixture to sit for a few minutes to give the chocolate time to melt. Whisk until smooth and then let the mixture cool, about 10 minutes.
In a small bowl combine the flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda. Whisk to combine.
Once the chocolate mixture has cooled add the eggs, vinegar, and oil to the bowl and whisk until smooth. Add the flour mixture and whisk everything together until well combined and a smooth batter is formed.
Measure out 1/4 cup of batter into each muffin tin. Bake the cupcakes for 17-19 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached. Pull the done cupcakes from the oven and place the pan on a wire rack. Let the cupcakes cool in the pan, on the rack, for 10 minutes. Remove the cupcakes from the pan once the 10 minutes are up and allow them to cool completely on the wire rack, about 1 hour.
For the frosting, combine the powdered sugar and cocoa together in the food processor and pulse a few times to combine. Add the milk, butter, melted chocolate, and vanilla, and process until smooth.
Frost cupcakes as desired. I used Wilton 2D.