Mar 27, 2012

Malted Milk Chocolate Chip Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Filling & Malted Chocolate Ganache

Happy early Easter!  I've got my son's first birthday around the corner so I thought I better hurry up and post an Easter treat for everyone while I still have my head on straight.

Just a heads up, I'll be making him a Cookie Monster Cake, C is for Cookie and don't you forget it.

But before we get into the world of cake decorating, let's talk malted milk balls aka Whoppers.

Oh God I have never been a fan of Whoppers.  Whoppers or Circus Peanuts.  Remember those orange, rubbery, why-the-hell-do-I-waste-my-calories on these horrible little door stops?  Ick.  So why am I making Malted Milk Cupcakes with Malted Milk Ganache?  Because they turned out DAMN good that's why!  And my husband likes these candies, so this is just a little love for him. 

Just a note, if you're here in the middle east or in Europe, you'll know Whoppers by their alter ego, the Malteser.  However I did find Whoppers at the Hershey's store in Dubai Mall.  During Easter time they're colored to look like Robin's Eggs:

Additionally this recipe calls for malted milk power.  If you're in the US you can find malted milk in the coffee isle along side the creamers and hot chocolate (Carnation brand).  Here in Dubai, ooh it was not that easy.  Those closest thing I could find was something called Horlicks:

I tried a bit before hand and it tasted exactly like the inside of a malted milk ball, so I assumed this would work.  Yum it did.

The texture the malted milk provided the cupcake was really quite interesting.  It was spongy yet still dense.  Like a happy marriage of a cookie and cake.  Fill 'em up with salted caramel and you've got yourself an Easter treat fit for any-bunny...hardy-har-har.

Malted Milk Chocolate Chip Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Filling & Malted Chocolate Ganache
for a printable version click here

For the cupcakes

3/4 cup malted milk powder (or Horlicks)
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1/2 cup butter, melted and cooled
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped (optional)
Robin Eggs (Whoppers) or Maltesers for garnish

For the Salted Caramel

Click here for the recipe and directions.  You can also leave the caramel out if you prefer, the cupcakes will still be awesome.  But who doesn't like caramel?

For the Malted Chocolate Ganache

4.5 oz. (128 g) chopped chocolate (I used a mix of dark and milk, but it's your preference)
1/2 cup (218 ml) heavy cream
3 tablespoons malted milk powder (or Horlicks)

For the Dyed Coconut
1 cup shredded coconut (sweetened kind is ok)
1 teaspoon water
green food coloring (I used Wilton's Gel food coloring)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Line 2 muffin tins with paper liners (I used a mini-muffin tin) and then spray the liners with non-stick spray and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl sift together the malted milk, brown sugar, flour, salt, and baking power.  Whisk to combine.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, melted butter, and vanilla.  It looks like Easter already! 

Make a well in the center of the dry mixture and add the wet ingredients.  Stir with a wooden spoon until just combined.

Fold in chocolate chips and walnuts.

If you are using a regular muffin tin, use a cookie scoop to portion out the batter into the liners.  Since I used a mini-tin I had to use a melon baller which worked perfect.  I'd say it was about 2 teaspoons per cupcake.  Bake for about 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.



Move to a wire rack to cool completely.

For the colored grass,  place the coconut in a zip-lock bag.  Combine water and food coloring in a small bowl, stir till gel is diluted.  The amount of food coloring depends on the intensity of color you want to achieve.  Pour colored water into the bag of coconut and shake till thoroughly coated. 

If you prefer to not fill the cupcakes you can skip this part.

You may have your own way to fill a cupcake, but I found this trick pretty handy.  Take a piping tip and gently cut into the top of cupcake.

Pull out the cut piece.  Don't eat it, I know it's difficult.  Stick the piping tip back inside and dig out some more of the cupcake.  This part you can eat. 

Fill the hole with the salted caramel (I used a piping bag but a zip lock bag with the corner cut off will work fine too).

Stick the top back on.  If some of the caramel oozes out, wipe with a damp paper towel.  As you go along you'll know when to stop filling so this won't happen.  Took me about a dozen tries.  Refrigerate for a few hours so the caramel hardens up.  I found this step pretty necessary so the ganache goes on easy. 

To prepare the ganache, chop up your chocolate into small pieces and place in a bowl.

In a small saucepan, whisk heavy cream and malted milk together.  Bring to a gentle boil, whisking to make sure all the malt powder dissolves completely.  Pour hot malted cream over the chocolate and let sit for 5 minutes.

Whisk until smooth.

I found the best way to cover the cupcake with the ganache was to dip it directly into the chocolate.  Swirl around slowly to make sure the top is evenly coated.

At this point you could leave the cupcakes as-is.  They are pretty sexy and elegant looking, but come on it's Easter.  We need fake grass and chocolate. 

Give a sprinkle of coconut to the ganache.  You'll want to do this immediately before the ganache sets.  I dipped the Robin Egg in the ganache (just a touch on the bottom) so it would stick well to the top of the cupcake.

Happy Easter Everyone, God Bless!

Cupcake recipe courtesy of The Purple Spoon

Salted Caramel courtesy of Erin's Food Files

Ganache recipe courtesy of Bakingdom

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