nut thing like buttah – pb chocolate cupcakes

by hungryrabbit on March 1, 2011

Creamy Peanut Butter Chocolate Cupcake

Ever since I started microchatting on Twitter, I can’t ignore National Food Days—celebrations of commerce and cuisine. By chance, I posted my Banana Bread recipe a few days before National Banana Bread Day. I took this as a sign that I should observe these holidays a little closer and join in the fun. I asked Josie @DaydreamerDsrts, when she posted for Pancake Week how she knew the date in advance.  “Silly, there’s a list,” she tweeted and sent it to me. With my own copy, I could be one of the cool kids, too.

For my true debut food holiday, I chose National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day, March 1. For someone who didn’t grow up in the states with the treat, I certainly now love it in desserts with its intriguing sweet and salty combination. Peanut butter with chocolate is still on my Top 10 List of favorite flavors.

Take a bite: an intensely dark Chocolate Cupcake with a surprise center and topped with creamy Peanut Butter Frosting. Ah, double dollops—the perfect way to celebrate National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day.

Creamy Peanut Butter Chocolate Cupcake

recipe adapted from Cook’s Illustrated

Peanut Butter Filling
3 ounces peanut butter
2 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar

Chocolate Cupcakes
3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped fine
1/3 cup (1 ounce) Dutch-processed cocoa
3/4 cup hot coffee
3/4 cup (4-1/8 ounces) bread flour
3/4 cup (5-1/4 ounces) granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
6 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Peanut Butter Frosting, recipe to follow
1/4 cup roasted peanuts, chopped

1. Combine peanut butter and confectioners’ sugar in small bowl. Mix well with rubber spatula, set aside.

2. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Line standard-size muffin pan (cups have ½-cup capacity) with baking-cup liners. Place chocolate and cocoa in medium bowl. Pour hot coffee over mixture and whisk until smooth. Set in refrigerator to cool completely, about 20 minutes. Whisk flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda together in medium bowl; set aside.

3. Whisk oil, eggs, vinegar, and vanilla into cooled chocolate-cocoa mixture until smooth. Add flour mixture and whisk until smooth.

4. Divide batter evenly among muffin pan cups. Place one slightly rounded teaspoon peanut butter filling on top of each cupcake. Bake until cupcakes are set and just firm to touch, 16 to 20 minutes. Cool cupcakes in muffin pan on wire rack until cool enough to handle, about 10 minutes. Carefully lift each cupcake from muffin pan and set on wire rack. Cool to room temperature before frosting, about 1 hour.

5. Pipe frosting on cupcakes or alternatively spread frosting with small off-set spatula. Garnish with chopped peanuts.

Peanut Butter Buttercream
8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup smooth peanut butter
1-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
Pinch table salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoon heavy cream

1. In standing mixer fitted with whisk attachment, beat butter and peanut butter at medium speed until smooth, about 20 seconds. Add confectioners’ sugar and salt; beat at medium-low speed until sugar is combined, about 1 minute.

2. Scrape bowl, add vanilla and heavy cream, and beat at medium speed until incorporated, about 10 seconds, then increase speed to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes.

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{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

Jenni March 1, 2011 at 7:29 am

Hello, peanut butter chocolate dudes! I shall eat you now.

I just had a thought–perhaps making a French or Italian buttercream, but subbing all-or-part peanut butter for the butter. Could be tasty…

Thanks for the creative spark, and the chocolatey treat! =D

Brian @ A Thought For Food March 1, 2011 at 7:39 am

Truly awesome, Ken! I don’t even need a taste to know that these are fantastic… but, if you ever want to make a batch for me, you know you’d make me a very happy man. ;-)

Renee (Kudos Kitchen) March 1, 2011 at 7:46 am

These look like perfection! I’m a peanut butter a-holic. Oh happy day!

JenniferA March 1, 2011 at 8:31 am

Oh my. Happy Peanut Butter Day indeed!!! This is like a Funny Bone but oh, so much better.

Jean March 1, 2011 at 10:18 am

I’ve been on a peanut butter kick lately. Hmm, maybe my subconscious was aware of something I wasn’t. Either way, I’d love these cupcakes and my peanut-butter-loving husband would probably eat one batch all by himself!

Cathy March 1, 2011 at 10:34 am

Ken, When I was a little girl, chocolate cake with peanut butter frosting was my birthday cake of choice. I love everything about this post. The photos made me grin like crazy. The combinations and textures just sing out to me. Thank you for such a sweet moment this morning. xo

Sara March 1, 2011 at 10:48 am

Lovely post…I’ve found my weekend cooking inspiration! On a separate note…where is this Holiday list and how can I get it? :)

Lisa March 1, 2011 at 10:57 am

Ken these look amazing, as always (=

hungryrabbit March 1, 2011 at 11:05 am

Thanks for stopping by, here’s the link to American Food Holidays Enjoy.

Jamie March 1, 2011 at 11:13 am

I personally don’t care what day it is, I’d eat two of these luscious babies straight away. Chocolate and peanut butter were born to be together and these cupcakes, deep, dark, moist, decadent and that luscious peanut butter frosting? Wow! Heaven! Recipe bookmarked, babe!

Vicki @ Wilde in the Kitchen March 1, 2011 at 12:06 pm

These look so delicious! PB & Chocolate is my total weakness… I would love a few of these for lunch!

Daydreamer Desserts March 1, 2011 at 12:44 pm

Hello fellow Peanut Butter Lover! You couldn’t have picked a better National Food Holiday for your debut, absolutely mouthwatering! :)

Janice March 1, 2011 at 4:47 pm

They look delicious. I love baking with peanut butter.

Firefly March 3, 2011 at 1:47 am

That looks so tempting! Love peanut butter and chocolate combo :)

fooddreamer March 3, 2011 at 6:40 am

These are yours? I didn’t realize! I kept seeing them on tastespotting and such and drooling, but not until I saw them on foodbuzz did I know they were your lovely creation!

sonia March 3, 2011 at 12:46 pm

Congrats for top 9 ! The cupcakes are looking heavenly. Loved the combo of peanuts and chocolate, its just my style of cupcake !

Chef Dennis March 3, 2011 at 1:10 pm

I think even if I had the list, I would never be one of the cool kids…sigh

those are gorgeous cupcakes, and i do love everything peanut butter!
Congrats on your top 9 today!

Kat @ Cupcake Kat March 3, 2011 at 11:02 pm

This is wonderful looking cupcake and delicious sounding recipe! How does one find this list?

hungryrabbit March 3, 2011 at 11:23 pm

Thanks for stopping by, here’s the link to American Food Holidays Enjoy.

Avanika (Yumsilicious Bakes) March 6, 2011 at 2:35 pm

Those cupcakes look delicious. Love the PB frosting!!

Avril March 8, 2011 at 5:07 pm

Chocolate and peanut butter – a winning combo! Delicious!!

Amber January 30, 2013 at 9:45 am

Making these right now. :) The peanut butter buttercreme is AMAZING and the batter tasted amazing (my one year old agreed).. Cupcakes are almost baked and look soooo pretty. Can’t wait to taste it all together!

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