This recipe is perfect for festive events or casual ones such as pool parties this summer. Your guests will not only be enticed by luscious chocolate cakes and rich frosting, but also by a sprinkling of precious “gold dust”.
Prep time: 35 minutes (for cake & frosting)
Bake time: 25 to 30 minutes
Prepare the Cake:
2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1-2/3 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup butter, softened (this can be substituted with 1/2 cup vegetable oil)
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
1-1/4 cups milk or water
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 large eggs
24 cupcake paper cups
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting (recipe follows)
Edible Gold Dust (found at professional bakers’ supply stores)
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Place cupcake paper cups in two cupcake metal pans (12 each).
2. In an 8 to 10-cup mixing bowl, beat together all ingredients (except for frosting and gold dust) with an electric hand mixer. Alternatively, place ingredients in bowl of a stand mixer.
3. Beat on high speed for about 3 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally with a rubber spatula.
4. Divide the batter evenly among the 24 cupcake paper cups in pan.
5. Bake for approximately 25 minutes. After 25 minutes, insert a pointed knife in center of one cupcake to check doneness. If knife comes out clean, the cupcakes are done. If not, bake for an additional 5 minutes and check doneness once more.
6. Remove cupcake pans from oven and set aside on a counter to cool (do not remove hot cupcakes from pans).
7. When cupcakes have cooled completely, prepare the chocolate frosting.
Prepare the Chocolate Buttercream Frosting:
3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate, melted and cooled
3 to 4 tablespoons milk
1. Mix powdered sugar and butter in medium bowl with a wooden spoon or electric hand mixer on low speed.
2. Stir in the vanilla and the chocolate.
3. Gradually beat in a little milk so that the frosting is smooth and spreadable (the frosting should be on the thicker side).
4. Transfer the thick frosting to a piping bag fitted with a star tip.
5. Squeeze and spread the frosting over each cupcake, in a swirling motion.
6. Top each cupcake with a sprinkling of gold dust.
7. Refrigerate up to 4 hours before serving.
Text and Photograph ©2013 Nancy DeLucia Real