14 February 2008

Valentine's Day Cupcakes

Roses are red,
Violets are blue,
I love this blog
And you should too!

Have you visited Farmgirl Fare? Cuz you should. It is absolutely one of my most favorite places on the internet. After I found Farmgirl Susan's blog, I literally went through every single archived post. I love her writing; I daydream about raising sheep and owning donkeys. For now I am content to live vicariously through Farmgirl Susan, but someday I want a life like hers. Oh and the bonus - I get some awesome recipes from her website!

So why bring Farmgirl Fare up all of a sudden? Well, my Valentine inspiration was found on her site a couple days ago. I wanted to bake something sweet for my co-workers. We have had a very dreary and depressing week at work. The weather is horrendous and there is a lot of turmoil regarding our future with our company. Our office is most likely being closed and we are moving to a new location. I am not really worried about anyone's job - more like a cloud of uncertainty hangs over us as far as geography and job expectations. Living in limbo is stressful - but it is nothing that a chocolate cupcake cannot cure!

Farmgirl Susan's Emergency Chocolate Cake is my go-to recipe for cake cravings. I love moist chocolatey cake. I loved boxed cake mixes as a child, and this is that type of cake - but better by several miles. The cake stays moist and tender for several days if kept cool and covered (frosting helps too). The chocolate flavor is not super strong, but for someone like me who doesn't always need extremely rich chocolate desserts, it is perfect. Most of all, I love this recipe for its simplicity. It takes maybe 5 minutes to throw together, plus the additional 10 minutes to very carefully lick the batter from the mixing bowl.

Thanks Farmgirl Susan!!

Chocolate Babycakes (I adapted to make cupcakes)
1/2 cup (1 stick/4 ounces) butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup yogurt or sour cream (or a combination)

Heat oven to 350 degrees. With an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar until smooth, 1-2 minutes. Beat in eggs one at a time. Beat in vanilla. Add dry ingredients to creamed mixture, alternating with yogurt. Beat just until smooth. Turn batter into prepared pans. Bake mini muffin size 10 minutes and baby loaf size 15 minutes, or until a toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean. Do not overbake. Cool in pan. Frost cooled cakes and top with mini chocolate chips or sprinkles if desired.

Mocha Buttercream Frosting
1/4 cup (1/2 stick, 2 ounces) butter, softened
1/4 cup (about 3 ounces) semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted (or not)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
About 1 Tablespoon milk

Melt chocolate chips and a small amount of the butter in the microwave. In a small bowl, beat remaining butter and powdered sugar until smooth. Beat in vanilla, then cocoa powder, espresso powder, melted chocolate, and enough milk to make desired consistency.


Farmgirl Susan said...

You're welcome! Thank you for all the sweet words. I'm so glad you're enjoying this recipe - and my blog. We had Chocolate Babycakes for breakfast the past two mornings! ; )

Congratulations on starting your own blog. Your dogs are too cute!

RecipeGirl said...

Thanks for leading us to Susan's blog- what a fun surprise!

These cupcakes look yummy. I have a recipe on my RecipeGirl site for Emergency Chocolate Cupcakes that are made in a blender. They're meant for times like... I need cupcakes for my kid's class and I don't have a box in the cupboard... but I have these ingredients in my pantry! They're pretty good too! Now I'm going to have chocolate today... sigh.

Michelle said...

I've tagged you. If you'd like to participate, see the "rules" here:


Josie said...

Wow... I need a blushing icon. Thanks for stopping by Farmgirl Susan! You are so welcome - It is all true :) Millie would love to come help Bear with farm duties, but Crash is petrified of all things rural!

Lori- I will have to check out your emergency cake too... as long as you don't totally require a blender since I think mine died way back in college!

Michelle- I am on my way to see what this tagging is all about!