You can thank Alli for this recipe. Her birthday cupcake request is what brought these cupcakes to life. When she first requested strawberry-chocolate-puppy cupcakes I was a bit stumped. Until I decided to tackle them as two separate cupcakes.
Strawberries and chocolate obviously go very well together and, it being close to Valentine’s Day, my first thought was chocolate dipped strawberries. So, I took a strawberry vanilla cupcake topped it with a swirl of whipped strawberry buttercream, filled it with a spoonful of ganache, finished it off with another swirl of buttercream, a fresh strawberry and an extra drizzle of ganache for good measure. Salivating yet?
Some of the cupcakes were left as you see on the left with a puppy cupcake topper placed on top, the other half were turned into the chocolate dipped strawberry cupcakes that you see on the right. I came across the idea of putting the filling into the frosting instead of in the cupcakes from Foodess (smartie!) – none of the cake goes to waste and you still get the benefit of a surprise filling. But, of course, if you prefer to have the filling inside the cupcakes themselves that is perfectly fine too (you can find out how to do just that, here).
- 2.5 cups cake/pastry flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoons salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter
- 1.5 cups sugar
- 2 eggs
- ⅓ cup buttermilk
- ¼ cup canola oil (or preferred neutral oil)
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups finely chopped strawberries
- 2 cups unsalted butter, softened
- 4 cups icing (confectioners) sugar, sifted
- ¼ cup strawberry puree
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 5 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
- ⅓ cup heavy cream, steaming hot
- 18 fresh strawberries
- Whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer beat together butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until fully incorporated between each addition. Add buttermilk, oil, and vanilla. Beat until combined. Add flour mixture. Stir just until combined. Fold in chopped strawberries with a spatula. Spoon mixture into paper-lined muffin cups using a ¼ cup measuring cup. Bake at 350ºF for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Allow to cool 5 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.
- In a stand mixer, beat butter for 6 minutes, until pale and creamy. Add remaining ingredients and beat for an additional 6 minutes, until light and creamy.
- If not using all of it right away beat by hand with a spatula, to remove any air bubbles, before using.
- Place chocolate in a bowl. Pour cream over chocolate and let sit for 2 minutes. Stir until smooth. Let cool to room temperature.
- Pipe a swirl of frosting along the perimeter of the cupcake (I used Ateco tip #804). Dollop a spoonful of ganache into the centre. Pipe on additional swirl of frosting on top. Place a strawberry on top of the cupcakes, nestling it into the frosting. Drizzle additional chocolate ganache around strawberry allowing it to drip down the sides of the frosting. (I like to use a squeeze bottle for this so that I can place the ganache exactly where i want it.)
- Store, covered, in the fridge until serving.
Strawberry cupcake base adapted from Annie’s Eats, originally from Good Things Catered.