Saturday, March 14, 2009

The Urban Professional Cupcake

What kind of cupcake does the Urban Professional eat? Why this delicious chocolate one made with Peet's coffee and buttermilk! Based on my grandma's Devil's Food cake recipe, this recipe transformed beautifully into a moist gooey cupcake- worthy of any briefcase carrying commuter.

I was initially inspired by these tiny figures, commuters dressed in gray suits and with briefcase in hand. I knew there was a cupcake out there for them. And then a reader emailed me for a moist chocolate cupcake recipe and I recalled my grandma's Devil's food cake which included a strong cup of coffee with rich buttermilk. Just what the Urban Professional ordered!

The recipe starts with sifting the dry ingredients into a mountain of flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.

Then adding in the buttermilk and oil and a cup of Peet's Major Dickason's Blend.

The batter is very thin and runny...but tastes delicious. I literally poured it using a glass measure into the muffin cups. Be sure not to overfill these cupcakes! And into the oven they went until baked.

The shiny gooey frosting can be a bit tricky but starts with sugar, cocoa powder, evaporated milk and butter. Melt away in a saucepan.

Bring to a rolling boil for 1 minute until it hits a soft ball stage.

I test this by dropping a bit into a glass of cold water and look for "soft balling" as taught to me by my grandma. My grandma takes her frosting a bit farther and it hardens into a fudge-like state. I prefer the shiny frosting.

The vanilla was stirred in and I actually dipped the cupcakes into the frosting to coat the surface. It worked beautifully to give each one a shiny coating of frosting.

The results were both stunning and delicious. The gooey frosting and moist cupcakes were decadent.

The Urban Professional Cupcake Recipe courtesy of my Grandma A:

2 cups flour
1 and 3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
1/2 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp baking soda
2/3 cup oil
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup Peet's Major Dickason's coffee
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350F. Sift dry ingredients. Add in oil and buttermilk and stir. Add hot coffee and mix well. Stir in vanilla. Pour into lined muffin cups- about 2/3 full. Bake about 18-20 min until done. Cupcakes will be dark in color but toothpick should come out clean. Let cool on a rack and remove.

One Minute Frosting:

3 Tbsp cocoa
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup evaporated milk
1/4 cup butter- cut into a few pieces
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla

Combine everything except vanilla. Stirring often, bring to a rolling boil. After about 1 minute, drop a bit into a glass of cold water to check for soft ball stage. Once reached, remove and stir vanilla. Dip cooled cupcakes into frosting and let set.


aas said...

LOVE those cupcakes, Lauren! You should sell them at coffee shops or the like. I'm just bummed that I don't live close enough to come over and taste one!!

Anonymous said...

I love the little urban professionals in their gray suits on top. Even better than being cute these cupcakes look and sound delicious.

coleen~ said...

I love your blog. This smells so yummy!!!I didn't see a quanity for the cocoa so I used a cup's worth. I also used yogurt instead of buttermilk as that is what I had on hand. I used a cup of expresso as I am not sure what kind of coffee that you mentioned? Is it coffee or a premixed drink? As I just moved, I can't find my muffin tin...I used an angel food cake pan. The tooth pick came out clean but it seems quite dense and moist on the bottom. Do you think that it is baked all the way? I am going to use some fruit instead of the glaze. I can't wait til my husband gets home so I can cut into this!

ChEBadger said...

Lauren - great concept. Coffee is so versatile and fun ... I love it in rubs, beer, by itself ... but I've never thought of cupcakes ... this is on my w/e to do list! Thanks!

Lauren said...

FIxed! It's a 1/2 cup of cocoa that I forgot!

Lauren said...


For the coffee, you can use instant or you can brew a cup...both types of coffee work. This recipe also works in a 9X 13 pan but it tends to sink in the middle a bit. If you add an egg, it won't sink but then it isn't as moist. It is a really moist recipe but it should bake all the way through. If you used a different pan, I would suggest a longer baking time. It's 35-40 min in a 9X13.

coleen~ said...

Lauren---SO SO YUMMY!! The texture was devine & the color was dark and rich! I did get it cooked all the way thru. the middle did sink a bit in the angel food pan, but that was fine. Not quite as chocolately as I had anticipated so the next time I will do the icing or something like it with the warm raspberries. Carmel would have worked very well, also. My husband suggested maybe even a drizzle of Ameretto.
Thanks for the wonderful idea and for making it so easy!