I didn’t let the heat get in the way of my cupcake craving this afternoon.
I flipped through Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World, and fired up the oven and the AC.
The only changes I made were using fresh cherries instead of frozen and candied.
The Basic Chocolate Cupcake Recipe
1 cup soy milk
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract, chocolate extract, or more vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder, Dutch-processed or regular
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 350°F and line a muffin pan with paper or foil liners.
Whisk together the soy milk and vinegar in a large bowl, and set aside for a few minutes to curdle. Add the sugar, oil, vanilla extract, and other extract, if using, to the soy milk mixture and beat until foamy. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add in two batches to wet ingredients and beat until no large lumps remain (a few tiny lumps are OK).
Pour into liners, filling 3/4 of the way. Bake 18 to 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Transfer to a cooling rack and let cool completely.
In the meantime, make:
The Fluffy Buttercream Frosting
1/2 cup non-hydrogenated shortening
1/2 cup non-hydrogenated margarine (we prefer Earth Balance)
3 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted if clumpy
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 cup plain soy milk or soy creamer (I actually used just a dash so that it was more stiff)
1. Beat the shortening and margarine together until well combined and fluffy. Add the sugar and beat for about 3 more minutes. Add the vanilla and soy milk, beat for another 5 to 7 minutes until fluffy.
The Cherry Sauce that you will be filling the cupcakes with!
1 (10 ounce) bag frozen cherries, THAWED
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon arrowroot
3 tablespoons pomegranate juice or water
1. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine thawed cherries and their juice, and sugar. Stir until mixture starts to simmer, about 4 to 5 minutes. Whisk together arrowroot and pomegranate juice in a small bowl or cup, then steadily pour into the cherries, stirring constantly. Keep stirring; the mixture will rapidly thicken. Remove from heat and allow to fully cool to room temperature.
If you don’t have that type of pan that makes holes in the middle of cupcakes, just with a measuring tablespoon carefully dig out neat cones in the middle of each cooled cupcake. Spoon about 2 to 3 cherries plus sauce into each hole and pipe a nice frosting star onto each cupcake. Add sprinkles or shaved chocolate and top with a cherry!
Save the little pieces from the cake holes and layer frosting, then cake, then frosting, and finally shaved chocolate and a cherry on top. Voila! Tower of cherry chocolate ready to be devoured!