I haven’t posted a recipe before that I’ve felt the need to try to describe as much as this one.
I’ll start by saying, the chocolate cakes are really, really good, so I urge you not to dismiss this recipe if the idea of tea in your icing doesn’t appeal to you. The cakes are somewhere between a brownie and a cupcake, with a crackly top and a moist, chocolate cake. Again, you’ll not be disappointed if you just make and enjoy the cake portion of this recipe!
So, on to the icing. Yes, it’s Earl Grey as in tea. And the tea is combined with whipped egg whites to make a fluffy, marshmallow-like frosting with a hint of lemon and tea, which combines with the lovely, moist chocolate, brownie-like cakes for a very grown-up sweet treat, that’s a nice change from the usual cupcake.
Again, if you’re adventurous, give this icing a try. If not, do try the chocolate tea cakes alone, or with your favourite chocolate buttercream.
Chocolate Cupcakes with Earl Grey Frosting
Summary: These are different and delicious. Use your favourite tea in the frosting or leave it out altogether and enjoy a marshmallow frosting.
- For the Chocolate Tea Cakes:
- 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 3/4 cup cake flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 large eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- For the Icing:
- 1 cup sugar
- 4 large egg whites
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- Pinch of salt
- 2 tea bags Earl Grey tea
- Make the cakes: Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line 18 regular-sized muffin pans with paper liners (or 48 mini-muffin). Melt the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water (do not let the bowl touch the water). Whisk until smooth, then remove the bowl; keep the water simmering in the saucepan. In another bowl, whisk the sugar, flour and salt; mix into the melted chocolate. Add the eggs, one at a time, then whisk in the vanilla until smooth.
- Divide the batter among the prepared cups, filling each three-quarters of the way. Bake until the cakes spring back when touched, 15 to 18 minutes (mine took longer, probably about 22 or 23 minutes. Be sure to test with a toothpick regularly so they are neither under or over-cooked. Toothpick will come out clean when they are ready). Remove from the pans and cool on a rack.
- Meanwhile, make the icing: Whisk the sugar, egg whites, lemon juice and salt by hand in the bowl of a stand mixer. Empty the tea bags and add the loose tea to the bowl, then set the bowl over the saucepan of simmering water and whisk until the mixture is hot and the sugar dissolves, about 2 minutes. Transfer the bowl to the stand mixer and beat with the whisk attachment on medium-high speed until the mixture holds stiff peaks, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a large resealable plastic bag, snip the corner and pipe the icing onto the cupcakes.
Prep time: 30 min | Cook time: 20 min | Total time: 50 min
Number of servings (yield): 18
Adapted from this Food Network recipe