chocolate cupcakes with mint buttercream.

it’s the first full day back from spring break. campus is pretty quiet. i anticipate that most students will come back tomorrow, and we’ll be back to the hustle and bustle.

a few of my students have already come into my office to say hello and tell me about their spring break spent doing service. surprisingly, they’ve been seniors. spring break has inspired them to do a year of service and postpone going to graduate school or finding a job.

do you remember the moment that changed your life as an undergraduate? when was it? what changed?

mine? well, the moment that really solidified it for me was when i went to a student affairs conference as an undergraduate and met people that i could become one day. the energy was high. their love for their work was contagious. i fell in love, and the rest is history.

now, i get to spend my time with students like these.
i live a good life.

sidenote: my secret to filling piping bags is this nifty set up right here.
i know, genius.

chocolate cupcakes with mint buttercream
printable recipe – from how to eat a cupcake and wilton

yield about 2 dozen

ingredients
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup warm water
3/4 cup buttermilk
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

for frosting
1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup veggie shortening
scant 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar

for chocolate decoration
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

preheat oven to 350. prepare cupcake tin with cupcake liners.

combine cocoa, flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a large mixing bowl. add the eggs, warm water, buttermilk, oil, and vanilla and stir until smooth and well-combined.

divide batter evenly in tins, filling each about halfway full. bake for about 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a cupcake comes out clean. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.

for frosting, cream butter and shortening in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. pour in extracts and mix. add confectioner’s sugar a cup at a time, beating each cup in well. add milk if your frosting is too thick.

for the decorative chocolate letters and hearts, melt semi-sweet chocolate over a double boiler or in the microwave. pour melted chocolate into a ziplock sandwich bag. cut off the corner of a ziplock bag and use it as a piping bag to make shapes and letters of your choosing. pipe onto a baking sheet covered with parchment or wax paper. after you are done piping, place baking sheet into the fridge to solidify. when cupcakes are frosted, top with your chocolate decorations.

to assemble, frost your cooled cupcakes. top with chocolate decoration. devour!

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