The Great British Bake-Off and The Great American Baking Show are two of my favorite baking shows. I love that the judges don’t yell at or deride the contestants and the contestants don’t talk dirt about each other (ahem…Top Chef…). They’re mostly home bakers, vying for the title of greatest baker and seem to have a good time. Plus, they do some incredible baking and it inspires me to pull out the cookbooks and get going!
Mary Berry is the constant between the two shows. She’s the classy, gentle judge who has a special way of telling the contestant that their baking is maybe a wee bit dry or might need 5 more minutes in the oven, without making them cry. I finally bought one of her cookbooks (I think she has over 80 published) called “Baking with Mary Berry” and have tried a couple of recipes from it, including these Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting.
I’ve made many chocolate frostings/icings in my life, but this was different from any of them. It’s simple, but delicious and deeply chocolate. I liked the way it set up on the cupcakes and since it was very sweet, it complemented the barely sweet cupcakes.
I found the cupcake to be a touch dry, but it seems to me that the Brits prefer a drier baked good than we colonists do. Next time I would add a bit more butter or maybe a tablespoon of oil to make them more moist. If you get a bite of frosting along with the cupcake, though, they go very well together. Don’t forget the coffee or cold milk to go along with them!
- 1/2 C cocoa powder
- about 1/4 C. boiling water
- 3/4 C margarine (I used butter)
- 3 large eggs
- 2/3 C granulated sugar
- 1 C self-rising flour
- 4 tbsp butter
- 1/3 C cocoa powder
- 3-4 tbsp milk
- 1 3/4 C confectioner's sugar
Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners. Sift the cocoa powder into a large bowl, pour in the boiling water, and mix into a thick paste. Add the remaining cake ingredients and mix with a hand-held mixer (or beat well with a wooden spoon).
Divide the mixture equally in the muffin pan, about 3/4 up the side of the liners. Bake for 12-14 minutes (don't over bake!) until springy to the touch. Cool cupcakes completely on a wire rack before frosting (about 30 minutes).
To make the frosting, melt the butter, then pour into a bowl. Sift in the cocoa powder and stir to mix. Stir in the milk and then sift in the confectioners' sugar a little at a time to make a glossy, spreadable frosting. Spread the frosting thickly on the cupcakes and let set.
Tips and Stuff: I will add another tablespoon of butter or so to make the cupcakes more moist next time. I added a little more milk to make the frosting a little thinner. There's a lot of frosting, so slather it thickly onto the cupcakes.