Chocolate and Chilli Cupcakes, inspired by Mexico

I just got back from Mexico. It was amazing- the weather was perfect, the people were lovely and the food! The food was to die for. (Mexican has always been my favourite)

The thing about Mexican food is how spicy everything is. Okay, not spicy like ah thats too spicy get me some water and yoghurt spicy. SPICE-y. They use so many different spices in their food that there is such a huge depth of flavour to every mouthful.

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I have a feeling that the whole chilli/chocolate combination was first used by the Mayans, and mainly in savoury food, but it has, as I’m sure you know, taken off. Chilli and chocolate are everywhere!

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So these are my homage to Mehico, and all things spicy and delicious.

Chilli and Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Ganache Icing

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4 ounces of butter

4 ounces of sugar (I used 2 ounces of caster and 2 of brown, mainly because I didn’t have enough caster, but they tasted great, so maybe brown sugar is the way to go?)

2 eggs

4 ounces of flour

1 ounce of cocoa powder

50g melted chocolate

4 tablespoons of milk

1 teaspoon of chilli powder

Beat together butter and sugar, then add eggs and mix until well combined. Sift in the flour and cocoa and powder and mix well.

In a bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, melt the chocolate. Add this to the mixture

Pour in the milk and stir in. Finally, add the chilli- go slow and keep tasting it to make sure you don’t waaaay over do it! (Also a great excuse to lick the spoon- a lot!)

Spoon the mixture into muffin cases and bake at 180 degree for 15 minutes.

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For the icing: (I was going to make Ganache Icing to go on top, but when I looked in the fridge I realised that I didn’t have enough cream, soooo… I had to modify my original plan, however this icing tasted pretty great. Have you noticed that me not having the ingredients I need is turning into a bit of a trend?)

100g chocolate

75ml milk

110g butter

150g icing sugar

Heat the milk and a small knob of the butter in a saucepan until it is nearly boiling- but not quite! Pour over the chocolate and stir until the chocolate has completely melted and you have a silky smooth mixture.

Then, in a separate bowl, mix together the remaining butter and icing sugar until you have what is almost a buttercream icing but less soft. Pour the chocolate mixture in, which will soften the icing and make it pliable and easy to work with.

Spoon onto the cupcakes and spread. It will be quite runny, so tread carefully- but it ends up looking really shiny and very appealing!

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xxR

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