Fast forward a couple months and we have the reason for this post. My friend, Amy, over at One Artsy Mama had also never tried this stuff and decided to host a party where we will "Go Nuts" for Nutella. So, here's my little contribution. Beware. You may never eat cupcakes any other way again. To quote a few of my co-workers, "best cupcakes on the face of the planet", "Heather, you were good before you started this blog, but you just get better and better. The best cupcakes you've ever made" and, of course the classic, "mmmm..." :) Clearly, they were a hit....
Now, for the recipes...
Dark Chocolate Cake
2 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup dark cocoa
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup sour cream
1 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups water
2 tablespoons white distilled vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350. Line pans with paper liners. Sift the dry ingredients together into a large bowl and whisk to combine them well. Add the oil and sour cream; whisk to blend. Gradually beat in the water. Blend in the vinegar and vanilla. Whisk in the eggs and beat until well blended. Pour into lined pans. Bake until a cake tester inserted in the center of each cupcake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for about 10 minutes before removing.
Chocolate Buttercream (adapted from here)
1/2 cup shortening
1 stick unsalted butter
3/4 cup dark cocoa
1 t vanilla
1 lb (approx. 4 cups) confectioner's sugar
3-4 T hazelnut creamer
In large bowl, cream shortening and butter with electric mixer. Add cocoa and vanilla. Gradually add sugar, one cup at a time, beating well on medium speed. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl often. When all sugar has been mixed in, icing will appear dry. Add creamer and beat at medium speed until light and fluffy. Keep bowl covered with a damp cloth until ready to use. For best results, keep icing bowl in refrigerator when not in use. Refrigerated in an airtight container, this icing can be stored 2 weeks. Rewhip before using.
To create the swirl effect I followed the tutorial found here (genius idea - wish I came up with it!) I put the Nutella in one bag and the Chocolate Buttercream in another. Voila! Beautifully swirled icing.
For extra flavor, before icing, I hollowed out the middle of the cupcakes with a sharp knife and filled them in with Nutella. This just added an extra layer of deliciousness (not to mention, calories) - shhh....
There you go...my version of Nutella cupcakes. Make them! You'll truly be missing out if you don't. And, if you haven't yet, try Nutella. Don't be blissfully unaware of what you've been missing for as long as I was. Until next time, happy reading and more importantly, happy cupcake-ing!