As 2011 draws near a close, there’s one last chance to don your most festive attire, gather with friends, and indulge in a rich and boozy dessert. Ringing in the new year calls for celebration, and these Baileys Irish Cream cupcakes are certainly celebratory. The cream-based liqueur intensifies both the chocolate batter and airy buttercream, while cinnamon and nutmeg add dimension to the topping. If you can’t decide on a single dessert, serve several. Try spicy Dulce de Leche brownies, peppermint cheesecake brownies, or devil’s food cupcakes with Dulce de Leche buttercream. Happy New Year!
Baileys Irish Cream Cupcakes
1 1/4 cups boiling water
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
1/4 cup Baileys Irish Cream
1 cup sugar
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 2/3 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
Baileys Irish Cream Buttercream
3/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
2 1/4 cups powdered sugar
2 Tbsp Baileys Irish Cream
1 ounce smooth dark chocolate
Preheat oven to 350°F and line a 12-cup mini muffin pan with baking cups. Whisk together boiling water and cocoa, then cool completely. Whisk in Baileys.
Beat sugar, butter, and vanilla extract in a large mixer bowl at medium speed until well blended (about 3 minutes). Add eggs and beat well. Whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Add half of flour mixture to sugar mixture and beat until just combined. Add cocoa mixture, then finish with remaining flour mixture.
Fill each baking cup with a slightly rounded tablespoon of batter, to about 1/4 inch below the top of the liner. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 12 to 15 minutes. Cool the cupcakes for 2 minutes in the pan on a wire rack. Holding an edge of each liner, carefully lift the cupcakes from the pan and place them on the wire rack to cool completely.
To make buttercream, beat butter, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a large mixer bowl on medium speed until light and fluffy. Reduce speed to low; add powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Add Baileys and beat on medium speed until airy.
Fit a pastry bag with a large French tip and pipe a spiral onto each cupcake; grate dark chocolate over tops. Store leftover cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature up to 2 days.
Yield – 40 mini-cupcakes (serving size: 1 cupcake)
Calories – 126
Carbs – 17