For the cupcakes:
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp instant espresso powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup canola oil
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup buttermilk
For the ganache:
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
2 Tbsp Bailey’s Irish Cream
1/8 tsp instant espresso powder
1/2 cup heavy cream
For the buttercream frosting:
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
4 Tbsp Bailey’s Irish Cream
3-4 cups powdered sugar
1. Preheat oven to 350. Line a cupcake/muffin pan with paper liners (12). In a small bowl, mix together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, espresso powder and salt. Stir with a whisk or fork to combine. (This takes the place of sifting in my kitchen. Judge me not!)
2. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, oil, egg and vanilla until smooth. Alternately whisk in flour mixture and buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture; whisk until smooth.
3. Scoop batter into prepared pan. Bake for 20-23 minutes or until tops of cupcakes spring back when lightly touched. Let cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely on rack.
4. For the ganache: Place chocolate chips, Bailey’s and espresso powder in a small, heat proof bowl. Microwave or heat heavy cream in a small sauce pan until it is almost boiling–you just want small bubbles popping up on the edge of the pan. (In plainer terms–don’t boil the cream, just get it really hot!) Pour the cream over the chocolate chip mixture; let it sit for a minute and then whisk until smooth.
5. For the buttercream: With a mixer, mix the butter and cream cheese until well blended. Add in the Bailey’s and blend. Add in the powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time, until the frosting reaches a spreadable consistency.
So…you already know how to put together the standard cupcakes.
For the jars, just fill them only about 1/4 to 1/3 full before baking. I lined up my jars on a baking sheet lined with a silicone mat. Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes. Let them cool. Then top them with the ganache and buttercream. Viola!
Yield: 12 standard cupcakes or 16-18 cupcakes baked in 4 oz. jars