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Recipe: Chocolate cupcakes

June 3, 2009

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Total time: 50 minutes

Servings: 20 standard cupcakes

Note: Dutch process cocoa refers to a treatment whereby the cocoa is treated with alkali (alkali neutralizes cocoa's natural acidity); this cocoa can be found at cooking and baking stores as well as at many well-stocked markets.

3/4 cup unsweetened Dutch process cocoa

3/4 cup hot strong brewed coffee

1 1/2 cups (6.4 ounces) all-purpose flour

1 cup (4 ounces) cake flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 cup (2 sticks) plus 1 tablespoon butter, at room temperature

2 eggs, at room temperature

2 egg yolks, at room temperature

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together the cocoa and coffee until combined and smooth. Set aside until the mixture comes to room temperature.

2. Meanwhile, in a separate medium bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder and salt. In a small bowl, whisk together the sugars, making sure there are no lumps.

3. In the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl using a hand mixer, cream together the butter and sugars until the mixture is light and airy, about 5 minutes. Scrape the sides as needed for even mixing.

4. With the mixer running, mix in the whole eggs, then the yolks, one at a time, until fully incorporated. Mix in the vanilla until just combined.

5. Mix in the combined dry ingredients and cocoa mixture, alternating between the two (one-third of the dry, then half of the cocoa, in stages) until both are thoroughly combined, being careful not to over-beat.

6. Evenly spoon the batter into 20 lined cupcake pans; the batter should fill each liner two-thirds to three-fourths full. Bake the cupcakes, one pan at a time and in the center of the oven, until the cupcakes have risen and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 15 to 20 minutes. Rotate the pan halfway through for even baking.

7. Remove the pan to a rack to cool before frosting the cupcakes. The cupcakes are best eaten the same day they are made.

Each cupcake: 226 calories; 3 grams protein; 30 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram fiber; 11 grams fat; 7 grams saturated fat; 68 mg. cholesterol; 143 mg. sodium.