Dark chocolate cupcakes

It is very hard to find good quality chocolate cupcakes (and chocolate cake for that matter), either they normally don’t have a rich chocolate taste, the sponge part is dry or the icing lacks flavour. I have been experimenting with different recipes and have come up with a very simple way to make really nice and chocolatey cupcakes that are moist and full of flavour. The secret is in good quality cocoa (Green&Blacks cocoa is my favourite) and mixing muscovado sugar with caster sugar. Muscovado sugar has molasses, so not only it gives it a caramel taste, but it’s more moist. The icing has a lovely intense chocolate flavour and they are ready and iced in about 45 minutes!

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Ingredients

Cupcakes
110g butter, room temperature
50g caster sugar
50g muscovado sugar
2 free-range eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
80g self-raising flour
30g cocoa powder

Dark chocolate icing
100g butter, room temperature
100g icing sugar
50g cocoa powder
chocolate sprinkles, optional

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Method

Cupcakes
1. Preheat the oven to 175C and line a muffin tin with 9 paper cases.
2. Cream the butter and  sugar in a bowl until pale. Beat in the eggs a little at a time .
3. Fold in the flour and cocoa powder and spoon the mixture into the paper cases until they are 2/3 full.
4. Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes, until a skewer inserted into one of the cakes comes out clean. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes, then remove from the tin and cool on a wire rack.

Chocolate icing
1. Beat the butter in a large bowl until soft. Add half the icing sugar and beat until smooth.
2. Add the remaining icing sugar with one teaspoon of the cocoa powder, and keep beating until the mixture is creamy and fluffy. Keep adding cocoa powder, a teaspoon at the time, until you are happy with the intensity of the chocolate.
3. Decorate the cupcakes with the chocolate icing, if you want,  add some chocolate sprinkles for a professional finish.

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