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These wonderfully chocolate cupcakes have moisture that can't be beaten thanks to the rich stout flavour of the beer.

Perfect for any over-18 birthday party and this cupcake seems to be more popular with men (I wonder why?) so it's a great surprise to bring out on a fella's birthday party and see the surprise when you explain about the Irish whiskey topping too. Not only do the look amazing they taste it too. This recipe makes 14.


200g/7oz flour
 220 g/ 8oz brown sugar
 43 g/ 1.5 oz cocoa powder
1 teaspoon of baking powder
½ teaspoon of salt
1 cup stout beer
120ml vegetable oil
2 tablespoons white or apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

230g/8oz butter at room temperature
360g/13.5oz powdered sugar
450 g/ 1lb sifted icing sugar
4 tablespoons Bailey's Irish Cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ teaspoon of cocoa powder to decorate

Caramel Sauce:
120g (4 oz) light brown sugar
120g (4 oz) butter
100ml cream or full cream milk

 

1M piping nozzle
2 x 12 hole muffin / cupcake tray
Mixing bowl
Nylon piping bag
Whisk or spoon
Cupcake cases

 

•  Preheat the oven to 180c/gas mark 4/350f

•  In your mixing bowl, mix together the flour, cocoa powder, brown sugar, baking soda and salt.

•  In a separate mixing bowl, whisk up the stout beer, the oil, vinegar and the vanilla.

•  Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and mix until both mixtures are fully combined. The paste should be relatively thick so don't over mix by whisking too much.

•  Line 2 cupcake/muffin trays with 14 cupcake cases and spread out the mixture evenly between these cases, filling about 2/3 of the cupcake case.

•  Bake between 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre of the cupcake comes out clean with a few cooked crumbs on the stick.

When ready, remove the cupcake and leave to cool on a wire rack before decorating.

Caramel sauce

•  In a sauce pan, melt the butter and sugar together over a low heat until the sugar is dissolved but be careful not to burn.

•  Slowly stir in the cream or milk and heat gently until the mixture is bubbling, be sure to stir continuously.

•  Remove from the heat allow to slightly cool.

 

•  Whist your cupcakes are cooling you can move on to the butter cream.

•  In a mixing bowl, add all of the ingredients listed above under 'Irish whiskey butter cream' and whisk together. You can do this by hand but you may prefer to use an electric mixer to speed up this process and make it easier. Mix until smooth and creamy.

•  Add your cream to the piping bag and attach the round nozzle.

•  Fill the bag half to two-thirds full and then unfold the top of the bag. Do not fill the bag too full.

•  To prevent the cream from squeezing out the top of the bag, twist or roll down the top of the bag tightly against the cream.

•  When piping, hold the bag so the tip is at the angle indicated for the technique. Then, gently squeeze to force the cream out, using even pressure while guiding the tip. Do not loosen your grip on the twisted end or the cream will begin to push up and out of the top of the bag.

•  Pipe the cream on top of each cupcake starting from the outer edge and piping in a circular motion moving upwards in a continuous movement, creating a swirl on top of the cupcake.

•  Drizzle over the cooled caramel sauce with a spoon and sprinkle the cocoa powder on top to decorate.

TOP TIPS:

Be extremely careful if baking with children and attempting the caramel sauce. When heating, sugar and butter can become extremely hot and sticky. So small hands beware!