In between all the wedding related festivities I’ve been attending lately there have been a fair few thirtieth birthdays
My friend P recently had his thirtieth on a glorious summery day at a bowls club. I thought that some cupcakes would be a nice addition to the day, provided I could make them masculine enough!
P wasn’t too fussed about the flavours of the cupcakes, but there were a couple of gluten free people in attendance, so a flourless cupcake was mandatory. A chocolate hazelnut cupcake seemed like a winning combination.
I also whipped up a batch of my favourite vanilla/vanilla cupcakes, based on a recipe from Thomas Keller. While the vanilla cupcakes were pretty delicious too, the chocolate hazelnut cupcakes definitely stole the show.
As a side note, everyone thought the green frosting topped vanilla cupcakes were mint flavoured – a great idea for a future cupcake!
So all in all, these were very successful. They had a great hazelnut flavour and were surprisingly light for a flourless cake. The frosting is a favourite of mine (which I used here). I’ll definitely be making these again!
Flourless choc-hazelnut cupcakes
For the cupcake:
200g dark chocolate, chopped
150g butter, chopped
6 eggs, separated
170g caster sugar
150g hazelnut meal
For the icing:
380g caster sugar
180ml eggwhites (from about 6 large eggs) at room temperature
370g butter, cut into pieces, at room temperature
140g dark chocolate – I used 70% cocoa
hazelnuts to decorate
- Beat the egg yolks and sugar in a bowl until thick and creamy. Add chocolate mixture and beat to combine:
- Beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Stir one-third of eggwhites into the chocolate mixture to lighten it. Gently fold the remainder through chocolate mixture:
- Spoon into prepared pans and bake for about 20 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the centre has moist crumbs clinging. Allow to cool completely before icing.
- Make the icing. Combine sugar and eggwhites in a heat proof bowl. Set the bowl over a pan of simmering water (the water should not touch the bottom of the bowl). Whisk until sugar has dissolved and the mixture is hot to the touch (approx. 65C/150F to 70C/160F). This took about 5 minutes.
- Working quickly, pour the mixture into a stand mixer and whip on high speed. Continue whipping until the mixture is thick and holds stiff peaks and the whites are cool to the touch – about 15 minutes.
- Switch to a paddle attachment and on medium speed, gradually add pieces of butter. Make sure each batch is incorporated before adding more.
- Keep beating until all butter is incorporated and the frosting is thick.
- Melt the chocolate over a double boiler and allow to cool slightly. Pour the chocolate over the frosting and blend to combine.
- Fill a piping bag and pipe frosting onto the cooled cupcakes. Top with half a hazelnut.