Friday, August 19, 2011

Chocolate Cherry Coke Cupcakes

More evidence that box cake mixes aren't completely evil.  Replace the water with your desired flavor of pop (read soda if you're from the East coast), add a little filling, top with this amazing frosting recipe (thanks, Mom!) and no one will know it only took three minutes to whip up the batter.

The story goes that the frosting is the original Waldorf Astoria recipe for their red velvet cake.  Not sure if I believe it.  But either way its my favorite.  Light and fluffy and not too sweet.  Unfortunately I had tried, six years ago (Almost to the dot.  Happy Birthday, EJ), to make a birthday cake for my best friend and failed miserably at the frosting.  I hadn't tried to make the frosting on my own since.  So this was the year to face up to my fears and do it again.  At home with mom "on call" I tried... and succeeded!  And don't be scared, I think the failure was a fluke because it really is simple.

Your favorite chocolate cake mix.  I used Duncan Hines Devil's Food.
Your favorite pop.  I've seen on a few other blogs that even diet works.
Eggs and oil as called for by the box.
Handful of mini chocolate chips.
Cherry pie filling.

Mix up the batter.
Add chocolate chips.
Scoop one large tablespoon (or use mini ice cream scoop) of batter into lined cupcake pans.
Spoon in cherry filling.  I put two cherries in each cupcake.
Please focus on the cherries and not the well-loved pan!
Scoop another tablespoon or so of cake batter on top.  Spread around so the filling is completely covered.

Bake for 20ish minutes.  Usually I encourage gooey centers, but these will collapse into the middle if they are excessively gooey.

1 cup milk
4 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup room temperature butter
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

Heat milk and flour over medium high heat.
Stir constantly until a thick paste forms.
Transfer to bowl.  Set aside and let cool.
Beat butter, shortening, and sugar.
Add cool flour mixture.
Mix a bit.
Add vanilla.
Beat until you can no longer feel the sugar granules on your tongue.

Frost cooled cupcakes.  Decorate with colored sugar crystals and a cherry.  I would also suggest the sour patch kid like chewy cherry coke bottles if you can find them.
Try these cupcakes, pretty please with a cherry on top.

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