4 ounces (1/2 cup) espresso or strongly brewed coffee, cooled to room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Ghirardelli Valentine’s Day Impressions
raw (demerara) sugar
Whipped Espresso Ganache
Place the chocolate in a large, heat-safe bowl and set aside.
In a separate, microwave-safe bowl, mix together the cream and espresso/coffee. Microwave until just coming to a boil, about 1 1/2-2 minutes.
Pour liquid over chocolate and let sit for 5 minutes. Stir until smooth. Set aside to cool completely, stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, make cupcakes.
Preheat oven to 350ºF and line a standard 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners.
In a bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, espresso powder, baking soda, and salt.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the sugar, oil, egg, espresso/coffee and vanilla until smooth.
Add dry ingredients to wet and stir/fold in just until evenly incorporated; batter does not need to be perfectly smooth.
Divide batter evenly between prepared muffin cups, filling each about 2/3 of the way, to make 11-12 cupcakes.
Bake in preheated oven for 15-18 minutes, just until a toothpick inserted into the center of one of the cupcakes comes out clean. Cool for about 10 minutes in pan, and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
Whipped Espresso Ganache (continued)
Transfer cooled ganache to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the wire whip attachment (or use a bowl and handheld electric mixer). Beat on medium-high speed just until thickened and paler in color, wiping down bowl and beater occasionally. Be careful not to overbeat.
Immediatley transfer whipped ganache to a piping bag fitted with a large tip (I used an Ateco #827 open star tip) and pipe onto cooled cupcakes. Press a Ghirardelli Valentine’s Day Impression into the top of each and sprinkle ganache with demerara sugar.
Store cupcakes in an airtight container. These should be fine kept out for a couple hours at cool room temperature, but otherwise should be refrigerated.
*To quickly bring an egg to room temperature, place in a bowl and cover with warm water. Let sit for 5-10 minutes before using.