Monthly Mystery Munchies #23: Chocolate Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Filling Topped with Chocolate Ganache

Yes, the title is a mouthful, but so are these cupcakes! This month’s theme made me so incredibly happy! I mean, I freaking love baking, and I love frosting, and filling of any variety, so let’s play! Ann’s instructions were: something with frosting and/or filling and you can use frosting as filling and vice versa. I mean!! Listen to this: Chocolate cupcakes hollowed out and filled with cream cheese frosting, then topped with chocolate ganache. Hashtag inheaven! When you first bite into the cupcake, there’s a distinct chocolatey taste, swiftly followed by a burst of creamy vanilla, then finished with a creamy ganache. Lots of creaminess, so much of!

Please click your way over to Grubbs n Critters and check out Ann’s delicious offering for this month’s challenge – choux (cream puffs) with Mascarpone cheese filling. The tummy wants what it wants! I have no doubt you will luh it!

Here we go…

Chocolate Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Filling Topped with Chocolate Ganache

Cupcake Supplies:

1 cup (100g) flour
¾ cup (75g) cocoa
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup butter, room temperature
½ cup (80g) white sugar
½ cup (80g) brown sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
3 tablespoons Bulgarian yoghurt

Cream Cheese Frosting Filling Supplies:

100g butter, room temperature
150g plain cream cheese, also room temperature
3 cups icing sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla paste (or essence)

Chocolate Ganache Supplies:

80g dark baking chocolate
80ml cream

Making It Happen:

Cupcakes: Preheat your oven to 180°C (375°F). Whisk the butter and sugar on high until well mixed.
Sift in the flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt and whisk on low for 10 seconds. The batter will be crumbly.

Whisk in the eggs, one at a time, until just combined, scraping down the sides and bottom well.
Whisk in the yoghurt and vanilla essence, beat on low for 15 seconds. Scrape down the sides and bottom and give it one last beat, about 5 seconds.

Fill the muffin cups half full and bake for 15-20 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes our clear. Let cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then refrigerate for half an hour.

While the cupcakes are chilling, make the filling, and then the ganache.

Cream Cheese Frosting Filling: In a large bowl, beat the room temperature butter and cream cheese on high for a minute. about 5 seconds. Sift in the icing sugar, stir with a spatula or wooden spoon until loosely combined, then beat until fully combined, about 30 seconds, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add the vanilla paste and give it one last stir.

Remove the chilled cupcakes from the fridge and hollow out the centre using a serrated knife, slicing the top off and keeping aside. Using a piping bag, fill the centre of each cupcake with frosting. Place the top back on, kinda like a lid. Refrigerate again.

Chocolate ganache: Heat the cream and add the chopped chocolate. Stir until smooth and allow to cool. Once chilled, scoop one tablespoon onto the cupcakes.

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Monthly Mystery Munchies: Truffles

Mixed truffles 1This month’s Monthly Mystery Munchies was a challenge! The theme is ‘sweets and colours’. How hard could it possibly be? Well, as it turns out, it was not as easy as I thought, but that’s the whole point of my and Ann’s monthly challenge – that we challenge each other and ourselves.

I racked my brain and Googled it for days, trying to find something that would suffice. Then something happened. I made Oreo truffles and fell in love. I mean, an unhealthy, obsessive, I-want-to-consume-all-of-you type of love. My mind was made up, this is it. This is the recipe. But why stop there, right? I wanted to add variety, so I came up with dark chocolate, chilli and almond truffles rolled in sesame seeds. I was in a quandary… which was my favourite? I couldn’t decide. So, to complicate things more, I added one more to the mix. White chocolate and coconut truffles with blue food colouring. The coconut perfectly compliments the sweetness of the white chocolate. I’ve separated the recipes into individual printable versions, but they are all delicious.

Oreo Truffles with Peppermint Crisp Topping

  • Servings: 15-20
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Oreo 1Stuff dreams are made of:

  • 120g cream cheese, room temperature
  • 150g crushed Oreos
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla paste (or essence)
  • 200g milk chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons cream
  • Peppermint Crisp, crushed

Making it happen:

Oreo 21. Break up the Oreos into halves. Blitz in your food processor until they resemble find crumbs. If you don’t have a food processor, halve the Oreos and put them in a Ziploc bag. Crush with a rolling pin or mallet.

 

 

 

 

 

Oreo 32. Put the cream cheese into a bowl and stir a few times to evenly spread it across the bowl. Add the Oreos and vanilla paste/essence and mix thoroughly, either with your hands or a tablespoon. (I used the back of a tablespoon.)

 

 

 

 

 

Oreo 53. Scoop out a heaped teaspoon’s worth of Oreo mixture into your hand and roll into a little ball. They are very rich so I don’t use more than one teaspoon of Oreo and cream cheese mixture. Put the ball on a baking tray lined with grease-proof paper, repeat these steps until you have finished all of the mixture. Refrigerate for two hours or overnight.

Oreo 64. Melt the milk chocolate and cream and using two forks, dip the Oreo truffles into the melted chocolate, covering the entire ball. Sprinkle the crushed Peppermint Crisp over the truffle and repeat the process until you’ve used up all of the chocolate mixture.

 

Oreo 95. Place the truffles back on the lined baking tray and return to the fridge until you’re ready to serve them. You can also freeze them.  

 

White Chocolate and Coconut Truffles

  • Servings: 20
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

White choc ingredientsStuff dreams are made of:

  • 80g double thick cream
  • 250g white cooking chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla paste (or essence)
  • 1 teaspoon blue food colouring (optional)

 

Making it happen: 

White choc 31. Chop up the white chocolate into small pieces. Melt the double cream on medium-low. As soon as it starts bubbling, take it off the heat, add the butter and stir until fully melted. Add the chocolate pieces, stirring until fully dissolved. Add the vanilla paste/essence and stir it in and then add the food colouring, stirring until fully mixed. Pour the chocolate mixture into a shallow bowl, cover and refrigerate for a minimum of four hours.

 

White choc 52. Once the chocolate has chilled completely, pour the desiccated coconut into a bowl. Spoon the chilled chocolate into your hand, one full teaspoon’s worth, and roll into a ball.

 

 

 

White choc 73. Roll the chocolate ball in the coconut. Repeat until you have finished all the chocolate.

 

 

 

White choc 8

4. Refrigerate until  you’re ready to serve. These truffles may also be frozen.

Dark Chocolate and Chilli Truffles with Sesame Seeds

  • Servings: 15-20
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Dark choc 1Stuff spicy dreams are made of:

  • 80g double cream at room temperature (or thick cream)
  • 250g dark chocolate cut into pieces
  • 2 tablespoons butter at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons caster sugar
  • ½ teaspoon almond essence
  • ¼ teaspoon chilli powder

Making it happen:

Dark choc 21. Chop up the chocolate into small pieces. Melt the double cream on medium-low heat and stir in the butter. Stir in the caster sugar. Once the cream starts to boil, remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate chips, whisking until it’s fully dissolved. Add almond essence and chilli, stirring thoroughly. Pour into a shallow bowl, cover and refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours or overnight.

 

Dark choc 72. Once the chocolate and chilli mixture is completely chilled, remove from the fridge. Place the sesame seeds in a bowl and, using one teaspoon’s worth of truffle mixture, roll them into a ball in the palm of your hand, and roll the ball in the sesame seeds, covering all sides.

 

 

20150814_0954283. Repeat this process until you’ve used up all of the chocolate chilli mixture and place them in the fridge until you’re ready to serve.

 

 

Baked Vanilla Cheesecake

This. This is everything. Cheesecake is my faaaaaavourite summer dessert. It’s winter right now, but the sun was shining so why not? Come hither old friend!

Everything about this recipe is addictive. The biscuit base is thick, crunchy and buttery. You’ll see I use extra biscuit – I like a thicker base. The cheesecake is creamy, velvety and smooth. I highly recommend using vanilla pods for this one, but you can use vanilla essence in its place. 2 teaspoons should do it.

Baked Vanilla Cheesecake

  • Servings: 10-12
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

Ingredients:

Cheesecake ingredients

For the biscuit base:
150g melted butter + more for greasing the cake tin
300g Marie biscuits (or digestive biscuits)
75g caster sugar
For the cheesecake:
460g plain cream cheese, room temperature
200g caster sugar
3 eggs, room temperature
2 tablespoons corn flour
250ml sour cream, room temperature
Seeds of 1 vanilla pod

Directions:

Cheesecake 1 21. Allow the cream cheese and sour cream to reach room temperature. Melt the butter in your microwave or on the stove. Break up the biscuits and blitz them in the food processor for 2 minutes until they resemble fine bread crumbs. Add the caster sugar and butter and blitz until well combined, about 30 seconds. Grease a 22cm springform cake tin with butter and pour the biscuit mixture into it. Level it with the back of a tablespoon until it’s smooth on top. Place the cake tin in the fridge for half an hour.

Cheesecake 3 22. After 20 minutes, preheat your oven to 150°C (300°F). Slice the vanilla pod in half, lengthways, and, holding the upturned end or ‘hook’ down, scrape out the vanilla seeds. Set aside. In your food processor, combine the cream cheese and caster sugar and process for 2 minutes. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating after each addition. Pour in the sour cream, corn flour and vanilla seeds and process for about a minute. Pour the cheesecake batter into your springform cake tin and bake in the middle shelf of your oven for an hour.

Cheesecake 5 23. Once it’s done, it will be golden brown and slightly firm to the touch. If it’s still too wet, bake for another 10 minutes. Once it’s done, leave the oven door slightly ajar and allow the cheesecake to cool down completely, about two hours, before transferring it to the fridge for a minimum of two hours but preferably overnight.

 

Cheesecake 6 24. You can serve it with an array of toppings – ice cream, chocolate sauce, caramel sauce, strawberry compote. It’s up to you and it’s fun to be able to play around! You can also serve it as is. It’s packed with so much flavour that nothing is missing! Serve at room temperature.

 

Monthly Mystery Munchies: Appetizers in Dough

It’s the second installment of my and Ann from Grubbs n Critters‘ Monthly Mystery Munchies challenge and this month was her turn to choose, which she did well. The theme is appetizers using dough and, admittedly, this pushed me out of my comfort zone but it was a welcome challenge because I always enjoy creating new recipes and working with ingredients that I don’t use in everyday cooking. It’s exciting, it’s challenging and it’s interesting. Do yourself a favour and check out Ann’s recipe – not only is her dough homemade but she used curried potatoes! I think we have a winner!

Bundles and foldovers 1I created three appetizers using phyllo pastry and, well, they didn’t last long! Listen, give me crispy, creamy, buttery pastry any day! The first one is fried mixed mushrooms and garlic with mozzarella. I used white button mushrooms but added portabellini mushrooms to add some extra flavour. I used fresh garlic cloves and fried up the lot, added mozzarella and baked for 15 minutes. Oh. Yum! The second one is blue cheese and honey. You make the phyllo the exact same way but substitute the ingredients with blue cheese and honey. This, it must be said, was The Husband’s suggestion. I personally do not have an affinity for blue cheese, I just can’t, but he does and I decided to oblige. Scored major points! Note that for the bundles, you can use butcher’s twine (kitchen string) to tie them into parcels. I did it both ways. The third one is salami and cream cheese foldovers with Italian parsley. The reason I used Italian instead of regular is because it has a stronger flavour. You can also do this dish the same as the above bundles but I made foldovers to add variety and they’re easier to chomp on. Also, bear in mind you can double or even triple all of these recipes – I made four of each simply because I was testing them and it was just The Husband and I, but if you’re having a large dinner party or catering for several people, you can adjust these recipes to as many as you need. Here we go…

Mushroom, Garlic and Mozzarella Phyllo Bundles:

Mushroom bundles in phyllo ingredients4 sheets phyllo pastry
6 portabellini mushrooms
6 white button mushrooms
1-2 garlic cloves, sliced
80g grated mozzarella
¼ cup melted butter plus 2 tablespoons
Pepper for seasoning

 

 

Mushroom bundles in phyllo 2 1Preheat your oven to 190°C (375°F). Thinly slice the mushrooms and garlic and fry in 1 tablespoon of butter on medium-low for ± 10 minutes, until soft and cooked. Season with pepper.

Melt the butter and drizzle 1 tablespoon over one sheet of phyllo. Paint the butter, spreading across the entire sheet, lay another piece of phyllo on top of the first piece and repeat these steps until you have four layers of phyllo. Using a sharp knife, slice the layered phyllo into four squares. Spoon one quarter of the mushrooms into the centre of each square and top with grated mozzarella.

Mushroom bundles in phyllo 3 1Bunch up into a ‘bundle’ – at this stage you can either pinch it at the neck or tie with kitchen string. Paint the last of the butter over the bundles, place them in a baking tray and bake for 15 minutes until golden and crispy.

 

 

 

Mushroom bundles in phyllo 5 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blue Cheese and Honey:

4 sheets phyllo pastry
4 tablespoons blue cheese
4 teaspoons honey
¼ cup melted butter plus 1 tablespoon

Follow the same steps as the mushroom bundles but use the above ingredients instead.

Salami, Cream Cheese and Italian Parsley Foldovers:

Salami cream cheese foldovers ingredients4 sheets phyllo pastry
4 slices salami, sliced up
4 tablespoons cream cheese
Italian parsley
5 tablespoons (70g) butter

 

 

 

Preheat the oven to 190°C (375°F). Melt the butter and drizzle 1 tablespoon over one sheet of phyllo. Paint the butter, spreading across the entire sheet, lay another piece of phyllo on top of the first piece and repeat these steps until you have four layers of phyllo. Using a sharp knife, slice the layered phyllo into four squares.

Salami cream cheese foldovers 6 1Place one tablespoon of cream cheese into the bottom righthand corner of each square and top with a quarter of the sliced up salami. Place four leaves of the parsley on top of the salami.

 

 

 

Salami cream cheese foldovers 7 2Now, fold down the top of the square until it meets the ingredients.

 

 

 

Salami cream cheese foldovers 3 2Fold the bottom right corner upwards into a triangle shape.

 

 

 

 

 

Salami cream cheese foldovers 4 2Fold over again (to the left).

 

 

 

 

 

 

Salami cream cheese foldovers 5 2Tuck the last piece underneath.

 

 

 

 

 

Salami cream cheese foldovers 10Paint the foldovers with the remaining butter, place on a baking tray and bake for 15 minutes.

 

 

 

 

 

Salami cream cheese foldovers 11

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks, Ann, for this lovely idea! I had so much fun! Here’s to next month!