I heard someone once say that St. Patrick’s Day without a drink is like Christmas Day without a tree! On the 17th of March St. Patrick’s Day will be celebrated throughout Ireland and there will be lots of “ceoil agus crack” (music and fun), with the festivities running well into the night! Many pints of the famous Irish drink called Guinness will be served and even the drink itself will be turned green for the occasion.
Guinness is a rich dense black looking liquid with a distinctive burnt and tangy flavour and when poured has a thick creamy head which floats on top. Even though I love the look of Guinness I have never acquired a taste for it! I always think of Guinness as a man’s drink, but back in Ireland in my younger days we ladies were known to have a half pint or two… but with a feminine twist… blackcurrant! The blackcurrant cordial makes this bittersweet drink more palatable and turns the creamy head into a delicate light pink… much more lady like.
Cooking with rather than drinking Guinness is my preference, it adds a depth of flavour and richness to cooking and baking which is not always so apparent. So, based on this famous Irish drink I decided to bake some not so overly sweet chocolate cupcakes with a blackcurrant center, topping them off with fresh whipped cream to echo the creamy head that sits on top of a pint of Guinness! Sláinte
Chocolate, Guinness and Blackcurrant Cupcakes
- 50g sour cream
- 75g butter, melted
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 50ml whole milk
- 150ml Guinness
- 250g all purpose flour
- 175g caster sugar
- 25g unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate soda
- 4 tablespoons blackcurrant jam
- 300ml whipping cream
- 1 -2 teaspoons of icing sugar
- edible glitter (optional)
How to make:
Preheat the oven to 190C/375F/170 Fan/Gas 5. Line a cupcake tin with 12 paper cases.
In a medium mixing bowl add the sour cream and mix with a whisk until smooth. Next add in the butter, egg, vanilla, milk and Guinness, whisk gently until all ingredients are combined.
In a larger mixing bowl sieve in the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. With a large spoon throughly mix all the dry ingredients together.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and using a large spoon gently mix and fold together until just combined and no dry ingredients are visible.
As the batter is fairly liquid use a large globe ice-cream scoop or a small cup to help fill the cupcake cases with. Fill no more than three-quarters full. Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes or until the tops spring back when lightly pressed with your fingers. Remove cupcakes from the oven and let stand for a few minutes before removing from the tin and transferring onto a wire rack to cool.
When cold use a cupcake corer to hollow out the center of each cupcake and fill each one with a teaspoon of blackcurrant jam.
I used a cupcake corer which is a handy little gadget to hollow out the middle of these cupcakes, but you can use an apple corer instead!
In a medium mixing bowl pour in the cream and add the icing sugar. With an electric whisk, whisk the cream until stiff peaks form, be careful at this stage or you could end up with butter.
The fresh cream can be piped onto the cupcakes an hour or two before serving. Using a piping bag fitted with a large star nozzle, pipe a swirl of cream on top of each cupcake. Or simply place a neat blob of cream on top using a spoon. If using, dust over some edible glitter for a sparkle effect. Serve or store in the fridge until needed