Monday, April 23, 2012

Chocolate Chili Stout Cakes with Mango Chili Nutella Ganache and Spicy Cream Cheese

We're getting into some of my favorite months and I couldn't be more excited. From now through October, I'll be a very happy girl. Warmer temps mean I get to break out all my cute sundresses, flip flops, sunglasses and floppy hats. All things I love!

Another thing I love about this time of year? Outdoor Festivals!! There is nothing like spending a weekend outdoors, listening to music, enjoying good food, and indulging in some day drinking. This past weekend was one of my favorites; Bethlehem's 17th annual Spring on 4th! What's on 3rd Chili Festival. Nothing but sunny skies, good friends, great food and plenty of cocktails! Now that's what I call a wonderfully relaxing spring day. Although the festival centers around Chili tasting and crowning a Chili cook-off winner, this is the second year in a row that I went to the festival without having a single taste of chili!! There is something about mixing spicy chili with a plethora of cocktails and beers that does not put my stomach at ease. Next year I vow to partake in the samplings to get the full festival experience.

I've been looking forward to this weekend for months, so I wanted to celebrate its arrival with some delicious treats. And from the reviews, I think the recipe I came up with was the perfect solution. Insane flavor combinations create a delicious impact with each bite. A rich chocolate stout cake base with bursts of heat from cayenne pepper and chili pepper, topped with spicy cream cheese frosting. Oh, did I forget to mention the amazing mango chili nutella ganache lurking deep inside each cake? It's the best part! This is officially my new favorite flavor combination...and surely a new chili festival tradition from here on out!

Chili Fest 2012

Chilli Fest 2012

Chowing Down at Chili Fest!

Chocolate Chili Stout Cakes with Mango Chili Nutella Ganache and Spicy Cream Cheese Frosting

For the Cupcakes
1 cup Southern Tier Chokolate Stout
1 cup butter
3/4 cup cocoa powder
2 cups all purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
2 eggs
2/3 cups heavy cream

For the Ganache
6 oz Hachez Mango Chili Cocoa D'Arriba
1/2 cup Nutella
3 tbsp butter
2/3 cup heavy cream

For the Frosting
Adapted via My Kitchen in the Rockies
1 tsp chili powder
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 cups confectioner's sugar
1 pkg cream cheese
8 tbsp butter
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

For the Cupcakes
-Bring 1 cup stout and 1 cup butter to simmer in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. 
-Add cocoa powder and whisk until mixture is smooth. Cool slightly
-Whisk flour, sugar, baking soda, and 3/4 teaspoon salt in large bowl to blend.
-In a small bowl, whisk eggs and heavy cream
-Add stout-chocolate mixture to egg mixture
-Combine with flour mixture
-Using an electric mixer, beat until combined
-Bake at 350* for about 15 minutes or until a toothpick is inserted and comes out clean

For the Ganache
-Bring heavy cream to a boil over low heat. Be careful not to burn!
-Remove from heat and add chopped chocolate bar, Nutella and butter
-Leave sit for a few minutes until chocolate and butter have melted
-Stir everything together
-Let sit and cool for 30 minutes for the ganache to thicken
-Fill into hollowed out cupcakes once they are cool

For the Frosting
-Sift together chili powder, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, and sugar
-Using an electric mixer, cream together cream cheese and butter for about 5 minutes
-Add vanilla extract
-Combine sugar mixture with cream cheese and beat until well blended
-Pipe frosting onto cupcakes and decorate!

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