Sunday, 18 September 2011

Chocolate Orange Cupcakes

*Groan* Another cupcake!

Damn right its another cupcake. If you haven't noticed it is my current obsession. How could you not love something that is so versatile. Cupcakes really allow you to be creative in the way you make, bake and decorate. Not to mention they are often super yummy!

The idea behind these gorgeous cupcakes came after my partner bought a whole bag of oranges. "What on earth will we do with a WHOLE bag of oranges?"
"Give them to DJ"
"Not even he could eat that many oranges"

So I had to think of a way to use up at least some of the oranges. Cupcakes had entered my mind but my initial thoughts were along the orange and poppy seed, until a recent trip to spotlight where I discovered a confectionery brand called "Roberts". They have a whole range of chocolate making equipment, flavoured fondants, oils and colourings. I found a little bottle of orange liqueur and decided that I definitely have to make chocolate orange cupcakes.

*Note: If your not using the orange liqueur then double the amount of zest and juice for that nice orange punch.

100gms dark chocolate
1 cup water
125gms butter - softened
1 1/4 cup caster sugar
3 eggs
Juice and zest of half an orange
2-3 mls orange liqueur (I used an eye dropper) - optional
1 1/2 cups self raising flour
1/2 cup plain flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder

Chocolate orange butter cream
75 gms butter - softened
2-3 tbl spoons icing sugar
40gms dark chocolate - melted, cooled.
2 drops of orange liqueur (optional)
1 tbl spoon orange juice.

1. Preheat oven to 160°C. Line a 12 hole muffin pan with paper cases. Combine the chocolate and water in a small saucepan over low heat. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
2. Using electric beaters, beat the butter and sugar until pale and creamy. Add the eggs, one at a time beating well between each one. Add the orange juice, zest and orange liqueur. Beat on a slow speed until well combined.
3. Add half the flours and cocoa to the butter mixture then half the chocolate mixture. Mixing well until all combined. Repeat with remaining flour, cocoa and chocolate.
4. Spoon the batter into the paper cases until approx 3/4 full. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pans for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
5. Meanwhile make the frosting. In a small bowl beat the butter until pale. Add the icing sugar and mix well. Add the chocolate a little at a time, mixing well as you go. Finally add the juice and/or liqueur. If the frosting seems too runny just add some more icing sugar.
6. Pipe the icing onto cooled cupcakes or using a knife to spread the icing on. Decorate with some grate orange zest.
7. Serve!
Enjoy :)

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