Sunday, October 17, 2010

Butterfinger Cupcakes

I don't know why I do this to myself. As if I need more projects and activities to fill my time! There's no rational reason for me to participate in The Sweetest Kitchen's Mystery Box Cupcake Challenge because I already won it and can't win again. It seems I simply can't resist a challenge even if I have nothing to gain from it.

I like that she departed from the traditional theme of pumpkin or Halloween for October's challenge. Not that I have anything against either of those things but it's nice to get a chance to try something a little different. Instead she chose the rather broad theme of "orange," which can easily be interpreted to include pumpkin or Halloween but can also include any number of other orange-colored or orange-flavored ingredients. How could I resist that kind of carte blanche?

I initially figured I'd do something with pumpkin anyway since it is the appropriate time of year for that and I have been craving pumpkin treats. Until I happened to walk past the candy bowl at work and spotted the Butterfingers perched on top. Halloween is the season for candy, after all, and is there any substance on this planet more unnaturally orange than the insides of a Butterfinger? Excepting people who hang out at the Jersey Shore too much, of course. So while I should be making an effort to cut back on the baking and consumption of sweets in general, I instead find myself trying to come up with the most overly indulgent Butterfinger cupcake I can imagine.

I am not exactly boldly going where no man has gone before with this idea. I found lots of Butterfinger cupcakes out there on the internet that I could have happily copied, but I wanted to make this creation my own. Which means cobbling together the most calorie-laden ingredients into one cupcake. I began with the candy bar cupcake recipe from Julie Hasson's 125 Best Cupcake Recipes. Basically chocolate cake with liberal amounts of Butterfinger candy bars chopped up and mixed into the batter. The filling is creamy chocolate fudge layered with peanut butter sauce and the entire thing is topped with buttery peanut butter frosting and crumbled bits of Butterfinger.

They are as heavenly as you might imagine! The cake recipe is yet another winner from 125 Best Cupcake Recipes. I did, however, find the one tablespoon of coffee called for to be a bit excessive, especially since the recipe was in the section of the book with recipes for kids. I'd suggest leaving it out or severely reducing it if you're baking for kids or anyone who doesn't go nuts for the flavor of coffee as it was very strong in the finished product. Even I, who adore coffee flavor in baked goods, might try using a little less next time around. The peanut butter frosting recipe, also from the same book, is wonderfully buttery and peanut buttery. I'm wishing I'd made two batches of these cupcakes since I foolishly made them to serve to my book club. Only trouble is they're so good I don't want to share!

Butterfinger Cupcakes
Recipe from 125 Best Cupcake Recipes by Julie Hasson

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder, sifted
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tbsp finely ground coffee
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 cup of Butterfinger candy bars, chopped into chunks (I used six Fun Size bars)

1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line 12 cupcake wells with paper liners.
2. In a small bowl, mix together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, oil, coffee, egg, and vanilla until smooth. Alternately whisk in flour mixture and buttermilk, making three additions of flour mixture and two of buttermilk, beating until smooth. Fold in chopped candy bars.
4. Scoop batter into prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 22 to 27 minutes or until tops of cupcakes spring back when lightly touched. Let cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely on rack.

Peanut Butter Filling
1 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tbsp smooth peanut butter
1/4 cup half and half or heavy cream
1/4 cup peanut butter chips

1. In a heavy saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. Add peanut butter and stir until melted.
2. Add half and half or cream and increase temperature to medium. Heat until almost simmering.
3. Place peanut butter chips in a bowl and pour melted mixture over chips. Let sit for one minute and stir until smooth.

Chocolate Filling
2 1/2 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
2 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tbsp corn syrup

1. In a heavy saucepan over low heat, melt the chocolate chips, stirring constantly.
2. Remove from heat, add butter and corn syrup and stir until butter is melted and mixture is smooth.
3. Using the cone method fill each cavity half full with peanut butter filling and top off with chocolate filling. Replace cake top.

Peanut Butter Frosting
Recipe from 125 Best Cupcake Recipes by Julie Hasson

2 cups confectioner's sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
2 tbsp milk
2 Fun Size Butterfinger candy bars, chopped

1. In a bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together confectioner's sugar and butter until creamy. Add peanut butter, beating well, Add milk and beat until smooth and creamy.
2. Pipe onto cupcakes and sprinkle chopped Butterfingers on top.

The winner of October’s Mystery Box Cupcake Challenge will receive prizes from:
Thank you to all our prize sponsors!

PhotobucketMake it Yours @ My Backyard Eden


Anonymous said...

Wow! These look wonderfully delicious! I might have to make them.

Jami said...

You know, you are not helping me diet. :)

memakingdo said...

Those look so good! Come link up to my party

Patty said...

You had me at Butterfinger! Yum!

Unknown said...

What a brilliant idea! I think this is by far the most original usage of the color orange in the challenge. Mmmmmm butterfinger.