Spirited St. Patrick’s Day Cupcakes

11 Mar

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Shamrocks, leprechauns and pots of gold are popping up everywhere, which can only mean one thing – the Luck o’ the Irish is upon us once again! St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner and the social media sites are starting to get their green on. One popular St. Patrick’s Day post that is absolutely everywhere is Brown Eyed Baker’s Guinness, Whiskey and Irish Cream Cupcakes – and rightfully so! These cupcakes are simply amazing. I’ve been making them myself every St. Patrick’s Day for a few years now, and they are perfect. But it is their 3 key ingredients, a trinity of potent potables, if you will, that led me to believe it was time to include them in the b.u.i. line-up.

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First, we start with the cupcake itself, a luscious chocolate cake spiked with a generous measure of what the Irish like to call “the black stuff.” In fact, the recipe calls for combining a cup of the Guinness with a cup of butter on the stove top, which smells so fabulous, you’ll be tempted to test a sip or two right then and there.

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After baking, the cupcakes are filled with a dollop of Jameson’s Irish Whiskey-infused chocolate ganache – chocolate, cream, butter and whiskey – what else can I say?

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Lastly, the confection is topped with the lightest, fluffiest, silkiest buttercream frosting enhanced with a hefty shot of that iconic ’70s after-dinner drink, Bailey’s Irish Cream.

The end result is a cupcake so blessed with Irish spirit, St. Patrick himself would declare it a miracle.

Slainte!

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Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes

Thanks to Brown eyed Baker for this wonderful recipe!

1 cup Guinness Stout

1 cup butter, room temperature

3/4 cup Dutch process cocoa powder

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 cups sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 eggs

2/3 cup sour cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Fill cupcake tins with 24 liners. Combine Guinness and butter in a heavy saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Add cocoa powder and whisk until the mixture is smooth. Let cool slightly.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer,  beat the eggs and sour cream on medium speed until combined. Add the Guinness-chocolate mixture to the egg mixture and beat just to combine. Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture, beating briefly. Using a rubber spatula, fold the batter until completely combined.

Divide the batter among the prepared cupcake tins. Bake for approximately 17 minutes, until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely on a rack.

Jameson’s Chocolate Ganache

8 ounces bittersweet chocolate

2/3 cup heavy cream

2 tablespoons butter, room temperature

2 teaspoons Jameson’s Irish Whiskey

Finely chop the chocolate and transfer to a heat-proof bowl. Heat the cream in a small saucepan until simmering and pour over the chopped chocolate. Let it sit for one minute and then, using a rubber spatula, stir it from the center outward until smooth. Add the butter and whiskey and stir until combined. Let the ganache cool until thick but still soft enough to be piped.

When ready, cut out the centers of the cooled cupcakes (I use a melon-baller, which takes out the perfect portion.) Transfer the ganache to a piping bag with a wide tip and fill each of the holes to the top with ganache.

Bailey’s Irish Cream Frosting

1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, room temperature (the original recipe calls for 2 cups, but I found this amount to be enough)

5 cups powdered sugar

pinch of salt

6 tablespoons Bailey’s Irish Cream (or any other brand you may have in your cupboard)

Using the whisk attachment of a stand mixer, whip the butter on medium-high speed for 5 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl occasionally. Reduce the speed to low and gradually add the powdered sugar and the pinch of salt until combined. Add the Bailey’s, increase the speed to medium-high and whip for another 2 – 3 minutes. Frost and decorate as desired.

Enjoy!

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