Mar 1, 2012

Mocha Muffins with Chocolate Ganache Glaze

I love cupcakes, but I don't really make them at home. There are many reasons:

1. I don't own proper piping bags and tips, and I don't feel like buying them.
2. I don't own an electric mixer or a stand mixer, and I'm waiting for (preferably the latter) to magically appear on my doorsteps.
3. I am not a big fan of piping with a ghetto ziplock bag.
4. I cringe when I have to use more than half a stick of butter in one sitting.
5. I cringe even more when I have to combine said amount of butter with equal amounts of sugar and some heavy cream.

So I basically leave the task of cupcake-making to the hands of strangers and pretend that they are totally not going to offset the hours I clocked at the gym.

A girl can dream!

Anyway, this is my at-home rendition of cupcakes. Technically, they are just muffins with a layer of melted chocolate. But this is good enough for me. I used applesauce instead of oils in the cake, and the frosting had just a dollop of butter. Yup, they are pretty much guilt free!

Mocha Muffins with Chocolate Ganache Glaze
Adapted from Joy of Baking

Makes about 9 muffins

For muffins:
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
3/8 cup whole wheat flour
1/8 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup pecans, walnuts, hazelnuts or almonds, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1 large egg
1/4 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup safflower, corn, vegetable, or canola oil (I used 1/4 cup of applesauce)
1/8 cup black coffee at room temperature
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

For chocolate ganache:
*See this recipe on

1. Preheat oven to 375F. Line muffin cups with paper liners.
2. In a bowl, sift flours and cocoa power together. Add sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nuts and chocolate chips.
3. In a separate bowl, whisk together egg, buttermilk, oil, coffee and vanilla extract. 
4. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Mix just enough to incorporate everything. 
5. Evenly fill the muffin cups and bake for 18-20 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Set aside and let cool. 
6. Prepare chocolate ganache and frost the muffins after they have completely cooled. I just frosted with the back of a teaspoon. For a smooth effect, put the muffins back into the oven for about a minute. 

*if you are adventurous, and/or you don't have heavy cream at home, you can try this (as I did)- melt some chocolate chips on low heat, add a small drop of butter and just enough milk to achieve a silky consistency. You want the chocolate to be just soft enough for you to drip onto the muffins. 

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