It's Bake-Along time! And for this week, my baking buddy, Zoe from Bake For Happy Kids
has chosen Designer Choc Baby Grands for our bake. This is one interesting and very challenging bake! For those of you who are familiar or has baked from Rose Levy Beranbaum's recipes before, would probably know that most of Rose's recipes are mostly out of the ordinary, requiring more steps than any other, rather long-winded, but very informative, I suppose. The same goes for this bake! It takes quite a few steps just to make these cupcakes, but these are no ordinary cupcakes! They are so yummy and you would not stop at just one!
And Rose is in the midst of authoring another baking book, scheduled to release in 2015!
Now, if Zoe
did not choose this cupcake for our Bake-Along bake, I would probably skipped baking this, reading the lengthy instructions is enough to make me turn to the next recipe! All the steps for just a cupcake, let's just see how good it is!
The instructions says to fill the cup liners to just under half full, well I did that, at least I thought I did, and these little gems really rose. Some of them rose higher than the top of the liners and am wondering how in the world am I supposed to fill the choc syrup and glaze on top. So I cheated, I cut off the top of the cake. (The little cut off tops got eaten up pretty quickly by my daughter and my visiting niece!) I got 12 cupcakes instead of 14, so it was without doubt, my fault!
Next is the preparation of the chocolate syrup. The recipe calls for milk chocolate, but I used semi-sweet dark chocolate as that was what I had. Some heavy cream was heated and mixed into the chopped chocolate and stir till it is all smooth and nice. This syrup is then brushed over the cupcakes, which are first poked with a wooden skewer so that the syrup is easily absorbed by the cake. Repeat till all syrup are used up and a thin coating coats the top. Leave it to set for about an hour. Mine did not set even after two hours, but decided to go ahead with the next step.
The next step is the preparation of the chocolate glaze which requires some heating on the stove. Ingredients used are corn syrup, cocoa powder, sugar, gelatin, water and heavy cream. Please do refer to the recipe below on how to prepare this chocolate glaze, it involves some heating and straining.
The chocolate glaze is then spooned over the cupcake and leave to set for about an hour. Mine did not set even after a couple of hours. The three kids are getting impatient and have been eyeing this delicious looking cupcake every so often popping into the kitchen and asked whether is it ready! OK, so I took three of these cupcakes and kept them in the fridge, hoping that the choc glaze will set soon. Since the ones outside are still so chocolaty wet, they ate it with a spoon, scoop the cake directly from the cake liners! It was so delicious! The cake is soft and moist, all coated with the "un-set" chocolate syrup and glaze and so chocolaty good!
The picture above was taken the next morning, I left the cupcakes in the fridge to set overnight. Look at the shape of the cupcake at the side where the chocolate glaze has flowed, but who's complaining about the shape, when it tastes so good!
This is the only one with the smooth top out of the three that I've kept in the fridge, just pretend that it is perfectly round!
The chocolate glaze on the top contains some gelatin, so when they set, it is kinda like eating soft jel-like chocolate top! Feedback from the kids, they love it, but they prefer eating these cupcakes with the spoon when the chocolate glaze is still runny and moist. Me included!
Would I make this again, I'm not sure! These are very delicious, one of the best chocolate cupcakes I've eaten, but all the washing of the different bowls and time spent on making these, makes me sigh! But I'm glad that this cupcake was chosen, otherwise I would probably shy away from this recipe, and miss out on one super delicious bake! Thanks, Zoe!
For our next bake, we will be baking based on a theme bake, where our theme will be Theme : Chocolate Eclairs. The linky will start on 11/12/2012 until 17/12/2012. Do join us, everyone's welcome.
Designer Choc Baby Grands
(adapted from "Rose's Heavenly Cakes" by Rose Levy Beranbaum)
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Makes 14 cupcakes
33 g unsweetened (alkalized) cocoa powder
1/4 cup boiling water
1/4 cup canola or safflower oil, at room temperature
2 large eggs, separated, plus 1 additional white, at room temperature
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
37 g cake flour
37 g bleached all-purpose flour
150 g superfine sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
14 foil cupcake liners, white inner liners still attached, coated with baking spray with flour, set in muffin pans
Preheat the oven 20 min or more before baking, set an oven rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F/175°C.
Mix the cocoa and liquid ingredients. In the bowl of a stand mixer, by hand, whisk the cocoa and boiling water until smooth. Cover with plastic wrap to prevent evaporation and cool to room temperature, about 30 min. To speed cooling, place the mixture in the refrigerator. Bring it to room temperature before proceeding.
Add the oil and yolks to the chocolate mixture. Attach the whisk beater. Starting on low speed, gradually raise the speed to medium and beat for about 1 minute, or until smooth and shiny, and resembling a butter-cream. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Beat in the vanilla for a few seconds.
Mix the dry ingredients. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
Make the batter. Add half the flour mixture to the chocolate mixture. Beat on low speed until the dry ingredients are moistened. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the remaining flour mixture. Raise the speed to medium-high and beat for I minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. The mixture will be very thick.
Starting on low speed, add the egg whites. Gradually raise the speed to medium-high and beat for 2 mins. The batter will now be like a thick soup. Using a silicone spatula, scrape it into a 2-cup or larger cup with a spout. Pour the batter into the prepared cupcake liners. They will be just under half full, 3/4 inch from the tops.
Bake the cupcakes. Bake for 15 to 20 min, or until a wire cake tester inserted in the centers comes out clean and the cupcakes spring back when pressed lightly in the centers. While the cupcakes are baking, make the ganache syrup. When the cupcakes are baked, set the pans on a wire rack.
Milk Chocolate Ganache Syrup
85g (3 ounces) milk chocolate, 40% to 41% cacao (or 2 ounces lower percentage milk chocolate and 1 ounce dark chocolate, 60% to 62% cacao), chopped
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp heavy cream
Make the milk chocolate ganache syrup. In a food processor, process the chocolate until very fine. In a 1-cup or larger microwavable cup with a spout (or in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring often), scald the cream (heat it to the boiling point; small bubbles will appear around the periphery). With the motor of the food processor running, pour the cream through the feed tube in a steady stream. Process for a few seconds until smooth. (Alternatively, grate the chocolate, place it in a small bowl, and stir in the scalded cream until the mixture is uniform in color.)
Transfer the chocolate syrup to a microwavable bowl and stir in the vanilla.
Apply the syrup. Remove the cupcakes still in the muffin pan to a wire rack. While they are still hot, poke about 12 deep holes in each cupcake with a wooden skewer. Brush the cupcakes with syrup. It penetrates most readily when at least 110°F/43°C almost hot to the touch. If necessary, reheat as it cools by giving it a few seconds on high power in the microwave. Allow them to sit for a few minutes, and then apply more syrup to fill the little holes left by the skewer. Continue applying the syrup until all of it has been used. There should be a thin coating covering the top of each cupcake. Allow the syrup to set until, when touched with a fingertip, it leaves no mark, about 1 hr.
28 g (1 tbsp plus 1 tsp) golden syrup or corn syrup
66g unsweetened (alkalized) cocoa powder
Make the lacquer glaze. Have ready a fine-mesh strainer suspended over a medium metal bowl. In a small bowl, place the 1/4 cup of cold water and sprinkle the gelatin over the top. Stir to moisten and soften the gelatin and allow it to sit for a minimum of 5 min. Cover tightly with plastic wrap to prevent evaporation and set aside.
In a small heavy saucepan over medium heat, whisk together the sugar and 1/3 cup of water. Stir constantly with the whisk until the sugar dissolves.
Remove the pan from the heat and, with the whisk, gently stir in the golden syrup and then the cocoa until smooth, making sure to reach into the corners of the pan. The mixture will be glossy. Using a silicone spatula, stir in the heavy cream.
Return the pan to medium heat and, stirring constantly, bring the mixture to the boiling point (190°F/88°C). Bubbles will just start to form around the edges.
Remove the pan from the heat and strain the mixture into the medium bowl. Cool slightly, for about 10 minutes. An instant-read thermometer should register 122 to 140°F or 50 to 60°C. With the silicone spatula, stir in the softened gelatin until dissolved completely and no longer streaky.
Strain the glaze into a 2-cup heatproof glass measure or bowl. (Metal will impart an undesirable flavor if the glaze is stored in it.) Cool for a few minutes, stirring very gently so as not to incorporate any air. For these cupcakes, the glaze coats best when just made (80°F/26°C). If the glaze is made ahead and reheated. it will be thicker and should be used at 82 to 85°F or 28 to 29°C.
Lift the cupcakes from the pans and carefully remove them from the foil liners, leaving the white inner liners still attached to the cupcakes. Set the foil liners aside.
Glaze the cupcakes. Place the cupcakes on a wire rack set on a 17 1/4 by 12 1/4 by 1-inch half-sheet pan or a large piece of aluminum foil to catch the excess glaze.
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Use a regular tablespoon (not a measuring spoon) to coat the tops of the cupcakes with the lacquer glaze. Smooth it into place with the rounded back of the spoon in a circular motion. Some of the glaze will cascade over the sides and can be reheated and re-poured. Use the aluminum foil as a funnel to pour the excess glaze back into the glass measure. Should they appear, any tiny bubbles can be pierced with a sharp needle. Allow the glaze to set for about 1 hr, or until just barely tacky when touched lightly with a fingertip. Set the cupcakes back in the foil liners. They are at their most shiny within 6 hrs of pouring the glaze. To revive the shine, brush lightly with a soft brush or wave a hair dryer set on low heat briefly over the cupcakes. If desired, encircle them with cupcake wrappers.
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