Giada’s show can hit or miss with me, but the moment I saw her making these small chocolate meringue cupcakes I knew that my husband and I, and our entire lab group were going to profit from it in our  early morning meeting.

(from Giada de Laurentiis)

2 large egg yolks
1/4 cup vegetable oil|
2/3 cup sugar, divided
2 Tbs cocoa powder (I used natural)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips, melted
1/4 cup cake flour
3 egg whites

for the topping:
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips, melted
1/2 Tbs vegetable oil

Heat the oven to 350F.
Line a 24-count mini-muffin pan with paper liners (1.25 inch diameter).

Beat the egg yolks, vegetable oil, 1/3 cup of the sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and salt, at high speed until smooth, about 2 minutes. Mix in the melted chocolate chips and stir until smooth (mixture will be very thick).

In a separate bowl,   beat the egg whites at high speed until they hold soft peaks, about 3 minutes. With the machine running, gradually add the remaining 1/3 cup sugar and continue to beat until the mixture holds stiff peaks, about 2 minutes.  Stir a small amount of the beaten egg whites into  the chocolate, to lighten it up. .Using a spatula, fold the remaining egg white mixture.  In batches, sift the flour over the batter and fold it in using a spatula. Fill each paper liner to the top with batter and bake for 12 minutes until puffed. Remove from the oven and let cool for 15 minutes.

For the topping: In a small bowl, combine the melted chocolate chips and oil. Stir until smooth.

Using a fork, drizzle the chocolate mixture over the cupcakes. Allow the topping to harden for at least 1 1/2 hours at room temperature before serving.


to print the recipe, click here

Comments: This  recipe really was a “piece of cake” in two ways:  it was simple, and it produced cupcakes that look dense, but were light and moist in your mouth.   The chocolate drizzle, which according to Giada should harden in a couple of hours, refused to cooperate.  Even the next morning it was still sticky to the touch, making the cupcakes quite messy to eat.    A brief stay in the fridge (about 15 minutes or so) helped a little bit, and also made it easier to remove the paper.

I’d make these again at the drop of a hat,  but using  a different recipe for the drizzle, to achieve the crunchy texture on top.    Their size was perfect: people who are not wild about sweets will be happy with one; chocoholics may return for more. And more…. and more… 😉

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