Friday, 14 September 2012

Gluten Free Cream Filled Chocolate Cupcakes

Today I share with you a recipe I endeavoured (and succeeded I might add) to create. For my husband's birthday this year, instead of cake, I made some cupcakes! What could be better then multiple mini cakes? :) Hayden grew up eating Hostess Cupcakes. You know, the ones filled with an insane amount of preservatives and last 1000 years? Ok, I'm exaggerating a little. Anyway, they were his favourite and he wanted me to try out this recipe.

I LOVE this recipe book!

In this gluten free cupcake book, there is a new take on these classic favourites from our childhood, with no chemicals, no refined sugar, and no gluten. Could life get any better then this? I submit that it cannot! Ok, maybe it can, but still. These are must try that are light and fluffy and that the whole family will love. I made them for my family when we went home and they were a hit!

Gluten Free Cream Filled Chocolate Cupcakes

1/4 cup coconut flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
4 lg eggs
1/4 cup grapeseed oil
1/2 cup agave nectar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 9 muffin cups with paper liners. 
In a large bowl, combine the coconut flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking soda. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, grapeseed oil, and agave nectar. Blend the wet ingredients into the coconut flour mixture with a handheld mixer until thoroughly combined.
Scoop 1/4 cup of batter into each prepared muffin cup.
Bake for 18-22 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached. Let the cupcakes cool in the pan for 1 hour.

Now for the next part I changed it up a bit. I'll write what the book says, and then tell you what I did.

To assemble the cupcakes, remove each from it's liner. Flip each cupcake upside down, and use a paring knife to carve out a circle just a bit larger than the size of a quarter and about 1 inch deep in the bottom center of each cupcake. Save the bottom pieces to reseal the cupcakes after filling. use the knife to hollow out a bit more around the inside of the cupcakes, discarding the crumbs.
Fill a pastry bag with the Meringue Frosting (I didn't use meringue, however, I used the whipping cream frosting instead.) Insert the tip of the pastry bag into the cupcake cavities and squeeze to frill. Trim the cupcake bottom pieces to make them thinner, then seal the cupcakes with the bottom pieces.

Frost the cupcake tops with the Chocolate Ganache to a smooth finish, then decorate with the remaining Meringue Frosting, making a curlicue pattern across the top of each cupcake. Serve immediately.

For myself, I didn't want to take all the liners off and touch all the cupcakes, so I chose to, instead, cut the hole in the top of the cupcake. The chocolate ganache covered it up nicely and they looked alright to me :) I also opted to use the Whipping Cream Frosting recipe instead of Meringue Frosting because to me, it just felt right. You can use whatever you like.

Whipped Cream Frosting
1 cup heavy cream
2 Tbsp agave nectar 

(I made only half this recipe and it was just enough for my cupcakes.)

In a deep bowl, whip the cream and agave nectar with a handheld mixer for 2 to 3 minutes, until it is thick and fluffy and soft peaks form.
Use immediately, using a spoon for dollops or a pastry bag for swirls. Or store in a glass jar in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.

Chocolate Ganache
3/4 cup heavy cream
8 ounces dark chocolate chips (just over 1 1/3 cups) 
(I used gluten free dark chocolate melting wafers)
1 tsp vanilla extract
Pinch of sea salt

In a medium saucepan, bring the heavy cream to a boil, then immediately remove it from the heat. Stir in the chocolate until it is melted and smooth, then stir in the vanilla extract and salt.
Let the ganache stand at room temperature for 5 minutes, then transfer to the refrigerator and chill until the ganache thickens and becomes shiny and spreadable. This could take anywhere from 10 - 30 minutes, depending on the temperature of your refrigerator.
If the frosting becomes too stiff to work with, reheat the pan ever so briefly over very low heat, and stir until softened.
Use immediately or store in a glass jar in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.

This was the first time I've ever made Ganache, and let me tell you….WOW! Was it ever rich and smooth and silky. Absolutely delicious. :)

Well, I hope you try this out and enjoy it as much as we did.

Happy Eating!

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