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Monday, September 26, 2011

Spicy Chocolate Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

This week's Dawg Dish meeting was all about pairing ingredients that normally wouldn't go together. I've been wanting to try this out for a while, and with a challenge like that, I couldn't put it off any longer.

Cupcakes adapted from this post at Foodologie, which was in turn adapted from this Hershey's recipe that I've been using since I discovered it in one of my mom's cookbooks

Frosting adapted from Food Network


2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups flour
1 cup cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 1/8 teaspoon red cayenne pepper
1 cup milk
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup hot water

Start by combining all the dry ingredients. In the baking world, sugar is usually not allowed to play dry ingredient reindeer games, but he can tag along in this recipe.

I was mildly apprehensive.

A different kind of baking soda volcano

Stir these together and add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Beat all of these on medium speed for two minutes. If you're mixing by hand, mix until well combined.


Add the water and stir until well combined. Your batter will be very thin.

I can't tell them apart.

Pour into a lined cupcake pan. Each cup should hold about 1/6 cup of batter. Bake at 350 degrees for 18-22 minutes or set. Let them cool. Seriously. You'll be able to tango with about three dozen of these spicy lovelies once you've used all the batter, so there's no need to hurt yourself.

Temptation and first-degree burns


1 stick of butter, softened
6 ounces cream cheese, softened
2-ish cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

Beat together the butter and cream cheese.

Gradually add the powdered sugar and vanilla.

Resist the urge to dip your face in the bowl.

Frost the cooled cupcakes.

Toppings (optional):

Mexican hot chocolate
Red hots

When I say Mexican hot chocolate, I mean those hexagonal or circular blocks of cinnamon-y chocolate-y deliciousness you'll find in your local grocery store. I think a lot of toppings would work on these; I actually wanted to use cinnamon gummies instead of the red hots, but they're kind of seasonal.

Chop the hot chocolate blocks into small pieces or powder or however they turn out.

I tried shaving, pounding with a knife, and finally chopping. If you have a food processor, using that would probably be a lot easier.

Sprinkle the fairy dust on your cupcakes.

And add your cinnamon candy of choice!

You'll wind up with a not-too-spicy cupcake. The cream cheese definitely balances everything out, but be sure to have some sort of beverage handy.

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