Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Chocolate Buttermilk Cupcakes with Mint Infused Whipped Cream

chocolate buttermilk cupcakes with mint infused whipped cream.

This past weekend I attended (and spoke at) the Blogher food conference. I wish I had a great, in depth rundown for you, but I find myself still processing it. It was fantastic to finally meet my friends from the kitchen generation, overwhelmingly fantastic, actually. It was like we had known each other for years and years. We shared hotel rooms, went to dinner together, and laughed late into the night. I also met some other really fantastic people, folks who’s blogs I’ve read for ages. That was surreal.

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I went to several of the sessions, but the one that has really stuck with me was the amazing photography & food styling session with Aran, Tami and Stephanie. It was the only session in which I took notes - pages of them. The way they talked about their evolution, passion & technique was inspiring.

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As soon as I got home, all I wanted to do was take pictures. Monday & Tuesday were so busy though, today was the first time I’ve had the chance.

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I tried implementing a few of points that they made, I’m not sure how successfully, but it was great to have that new knowledge to work from. Thanks for the inspiration, ladies!

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While out running errands this morning, I picked up this pretty little mint plant. I knew immediately what I wanted to make, an idea that had been bouncing around in my head for a while. The cupcake it’s self is rich and moist, using the fantastic Scharffen Berger cocoa powder I received at the conference, and buttermilk. I’m in love with Scharffen Berger products. If you have a chance, pick up one of their mocha dark chocolate bars. They will blow your mind.

Since it’s been so warm lately, I decided I wanted to make this a little bit lighter than your usual cupcake, opting to use a whipped cream instead of buttercream. I infused the cream with the mint, and sweetened it lightly. I think this is my favorite cupcake topping, ever. Infusing it with real mint as opposed to using mint extract is what makes it so good.

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Chocolate Buttermilk Cupcakes with Mint Infused Whipped Cream
Cupcakes adapted from Martha Stewart

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
7 1/2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
7 tablespoons buttermilk
1 large egg
1 large egg white

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

With an electric mixer, combine cocoa and 5 tablespoons hot water until a thick paste forms (this process intensifies the chocolate flavor). Add butter, buttermilk, egg, and egg white; beat until combined. Whisk in flour mixture until smooth.

Scoop batter into prepared tin. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Transfer cupcakes to a wire rack to cool completely.

Top with whipped cream, recipe below

Mint Infused Whipped Cream

2 cups heavy whipping cream
3-4 sprigs, fresh mint (i used sweet mint, you could use spearmint, peppermint, chocolate mint, etc)
2-3 tablespoons powdered sugar (more if you like it sweeter)

Crush mint leaves a bit, then place in a medium sized bowl, pour heavy cream over. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate 6 hours to overnight (i refrigerated for about 5 hours, and while the cream was minty, it wasn’t nearly minty enough. I’d recommend keeping it in the fridge overnight.)

Remove mint from heavy cream, add powdered sugar and by hand or using an electric mixer, whip until soft peaks form.

106 comments:

  1. YUM. Beautiful photos as always. Please come to Paris and be my friend ! I want to learn how to cook with you and I want to be your food taster haha ;)

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  2. These look fantastic! Like French Lover, I want you to come here and be MY friend - can you get over to the UK? ;-)

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  3. hi hannah - i'm partial to the choc-mint combination and since i don't fancy butter cream frosting much these little cakes will be my kind of cupcakes for me!

    lovely pictures as always, love how you captured the summery light and shade.

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  4. hannah, these cupcakes are gorgeous, and all of your photos are just stunning. it was such a treat to meet you at the tasty kitchen party this past weekend, wish we would've had more time to chat! your favorite session was mine as well, i've been so inspired to cook, bake and take photos since!

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  5. Gorgeous!
    I've been really into whipped-cream-as-frosting lately, too! I find it so refreshing with citrus: lemon layer cake, stuffed with lemon curd and frosted with whipped cream, decorated with lemon zest.

    I'm in love with how green the mint is vs the dark brown cupcake--beautiful! :)

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  6. Now I NEED some mint to try this mint-infused whipped cream....it sounds so fantastic!!!!!

    Your images are GORGEOUS!

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  7. Your pictures are gorgeous (as always!) and I think I am already in love with your idea of mint-infused whipped cream! Thanks Hannah!

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  8. I am so sad I didn't get to meet you at the conference! It was so crazy - I know I missed meeting a ton of bloggers in person. Hopefully it will happen next time.

    Buttermilk chocolate cupcakes are my all time favorites, and you just kicked it over the edge with the mint whipped cream.

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  9. Completely agree about the Scharffen Berger chocolate: it makes the most amazing sweets. The mint whipped cream is genius, you definitely had me scratching my head and wondering "now how come I didn't think of that?!" Bravo!

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  10. Beautiful photos, Hannah. They tell a story now ;)

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  11. Fabulous cupcakes. I can taste the chocolate and buttermilk just reading this. Gorgeous photos as well!

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  12. Unfortunately I didn't get to meet you at Blogherfood '11, but I have followed your blog for some time. I first was drawn in by your rustic/homey/nostalgic desserts and then hooked with your photos. Scharffen Berger fan YES, Mocha bars OH JA, and the chocolate cupcakes look DELICIOUS!

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  13. We are being over-run with mint! Thanks for a great way to use it!

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  14. I was beyOnd jealous of all the people at blogher- next year. I hope you will share some of the things you learned!

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  15. I love mint + chocolate - it's one of my favorite flavor combos. Infusing whipped cream with fresh mint sounds absolutely wonderful and I can't wait to try your recipe.

    I love your photos as well. They're lovely!

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  16. Stunning photos of a delectable flavor combination! Look forward to making this for a chocolate-mint-loving family. Thank you!

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  17. This recipe sounds delicious and your photos are amazing!

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  18. GORGOEUS, as always!!! The mint infused whip cream is genius here!

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  19. Mint infused whipped cream what a great idea to complement these buttermilk and chocolate cupcakes!

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  20. hannah - i'm so honored and flattered to be mentioned in your post. i'm thrilled you enjoyed our panel at BHF....not that you need the help :) you're such a talent and i'm happy to know you. the only sad thing? you're not close enough to share your baked goods with me. i'm going to be forced to make these on my own - they sound amazing!

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  21. the mint pictures are lovely....love the way you've added the mint leaf on top of each cupcake :)

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  22. Drop dead gorgeous photos!!! Yes, please share what you learned and those cupcakes look ( and I'm sure taste) perfect! :)

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  23. Those are some FABULOUS photos! I love them, LOVE them! :)

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  24. Cupcakes look so good, love the icing choice, thanks for the recipe to try.

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  25. Beautiful, as always, Hannah! I love the visual connection between the potted plant and the cupcakes - I thought I was looking at potting soil in the 1st cupcake photo!

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  26. Those look delicious! I can't wait to try them out! What do you use as your cupcake liners? Is that just parchment paper?

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  27. Beautiful photos and adorable cupcakes!

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  28. I totally feel like I need inspiration and a refresh, so I'm glad that the conference was like that for you! One of these days I'll have to attend a conference and meet the people I only know from online. Your photos are gorgeous and inspiring :)

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  29. The photos are really stunning and the cupcakes look, well, EVEN BETTER <3

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  30. I adore how you made these look like a mint plant... the chocolate dirt and the green leaves popping out of the top. Gorgeous!

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  31. I'm drooling... your cupcakes look heavenly! I've never heard of mint-infused whipped cream. Brilliant!

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  32. It was such a joy to meet you at BlogHer Food, Hannah. Congratulations on such a successful panel. I'm with Tami - just wish you were closer so we visit and eat these cupcakes together.

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  33. Your photographs are beautiful and inspiring! I love the whole aesthetic of your blog--it's somehow relaxing and energizing all at once. Not to mention how delicious all of the food looks.

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  34. Sounds liked it was inspired ... all the way around.

    And the recipe? Magnificence.

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  35. 1. Where do you get the baking papers?

    2. I would love, LOVE a post about the types of things that you learned about photography at the conference. Share some with the rest of us who struggle! ;)

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  36. hey guys! thanks for all your kind words!

    the baking papers are actually just parchment paper, cut into squares and pressed down into the cupcake tins!

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  37. I can't think of anything better than a chocolate cupcake with mint infused whipped cream on top! Perfect Summer time treat, yum!

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  38. Beautiful picture! I´m Happy your come back to your blog whith your fresh photograpys!

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  39. This looks absolutely amazing. I'm not even a big fan of chocolate, but I can't wait to try it!

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  40. Beautiful! And fresh mint?! Even better. They look awesome :)

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  41. The title alone sold me, you have a way with words.

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  42. those look absolutely beautiful! i love that you used parchment for the cakes.
    gorgeous!

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  43. i just think you're so lovely and inspirational.

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  44. Hi,

    I am your follower!
    I really really like your blog.
    Keep up the good work!

    Do visit my blog too at http://aliascreativelife.blogspot.com/

    Alia

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  45. Oh my word! I am SO making these!! Like, TODAY. :) We have buttermilk waiting to be used in the fridge and fresh mint on our back porch, waiting to be snipped! Thank you for inspiring me once again, Hannah. :)

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  46. Yummy! The pictures of these are stunning, and a good use for some of the mint growing in the garden I think!

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  47. I stumbled upon your blog last night, and I just can't stop looking around. I love your photography style and your recipes. I'm vegan, but I'm still drooling over your food. :)

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  48. Adding fresh mint absolute perfection. Pure yumminess :-) Hugs

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  49. These cupcakes look so lovely! I have tons of mint growing in my garden, so I'll surely add them to my list of recipes to try.

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  50. Yum!! Wow! That looks amazing! I love the mint on top!

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  51. always amazing photos and recipes from you! they looks so delish!

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  52. The only thing I can think of to write is, "Shazaam!" Great, great job.

    (ps-fab in the header, too!)

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  53. Your photos are always fantastic.

    lisaDay

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  54. god, these look delicious...and i don't ever eat dessert!

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  55. I love your photography style! Those chocolate cupcakes look yummy! They would be perfect with a vanilla milkshake! :D

    p.s I followed your blog!

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  56. i am all over this since my mint has overtaken my little garden and i need something to do with some of it. thanks for the beautiful photos and delicious recipes!

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  57. Just found your blog and it's absolutely amazing!

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  58. Looks delicious as always. I've been trying to grow mint, so once they come in, I'll give this a try. (:

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  59. Ah I think mint and chocolate are just one of those combinations that never, ever get old. Lovely pictures... I usually dislike cupcakes but your pictures and the fact you topped them with whipped cream instead of rich, heavy buttercream (good idea!) makes me want to try them out.

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  61. I´m late, but... the cocoa powder you use is natural or dutch processed? here in Europe it´s more usual the dutch and the soda-powder amount is therefore different!

    Thank you for the recipe and lovely greetings from Spain :)

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  62. Bake in a preheated oven at 180C or gas mark 4 for approx. 45 mins. Cut the cake in half or bake in two separate tins instead of one, so that you can add a filling between the layers.

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  63. curious::what did you use for cupcake wrappers?

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  64. I just wanted to ask if you are referring to 350 degrees F or C?

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