Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Irish Car Bomb's


This past weekend in honor of St. Patrick’s Day and my friend’s birthday I made car bomb cupcakes. Yes, that’s right, car bomb cupcakes. Not familiar with this beverage? It’s a Guinness stout that you drop a shot of Jameson whiskey and Irish Bailey’s cream into and immediately drink the whole thing down, quickly, before the mixture curdles. Doesn’t sound appealing to you? Take it from someone who has done a few (mostly in my younger drinking days) that it is actually quite good. The beer tames the bite of the whiskey, and the Baileys tames the bitterness of the Guinness, leaving you with a creamy alcohol milkshake of shorts. The next time you’re in Ireland don’t think you’ll be smart and order this drink in a pub. You will either get blank stares or distain. The Irish are not fans of this drink, I believe the Americans actually invented it. Go figure!

The bigger question isn’t why this drink was made, but how on earth did I turn an Irish car bomb into cupcake? Well my friends it went a little something like this. I made a chocolate stout cupcake, filled it with chocolate-whiskey ganache, and then topped it all off with Bailey’s frosting. Sounds good, huh? They were, let me reassure you! The cake was spongy yet dense. The ganache filling, rich and velvety, but with a good kick from the whiskey. And the frosting, oh my, the frosting (my favorite part) was dense and heavy, but creamy and flavorful from the Baileys.

These cupcakes were a huge hit and the perfect accompaniment to corned beef and cabbage. Most importantly, the birthday boy was thrilled! We spent an enjoyable evening eating and drinking and then continued the party at my new favorite wine bar. Yep, I spent St. Patty’s a wine bar. What? They were having great deals and live music! I also may have stolen a sign from them, but I can neither confirm nor deny this.

A couple of notes post baking:
One, about half of my cupcakes fell considerably once cooled. I may have missed a cup of flour when measuring out the dry ingredients. Note to self: in the future do not bake after working 4 days in a row, no good will come from this! The positive from this is that the divot became a nature hole, which I needed for the ganache. For the remaining cakes I used a melon-baller to scope out a portion of the middle.
Second, I had a lot of ganache left over. This isn’t a bad thing, since I put the rest into 2 containers. One if the fridge and one in the freezer for future chocolate-whiskey ganache needs. Hey, you never know when the urge may strike. It’s always better to be prepared!
Thirdly, wait; I don’t have a third thing! Just go make these cupcakes people! They are good!



Irish Car Bomb Cupcakes:
Makes 20-24 cupcakes

Chocolate Stout Cake
1 cup stout (like Guinness)
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups flour
2 cups granulated sugar
1 ½ tsp baking soda
¾ tsp salt
2 eggs
2/3 cup sour cream

Preheat oven to 350F. In a medium saucepan heat up the stout and butter until the butter melts, whisk in the cocoa powder, and set aside to cool. In a bowl mix the flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda together. In a separate bowl beat the eggs and sour cream. Add the eggs to the stout-chocolate mixture. Next, add this to the flour mixture on low speed until just combined.
In a greased and lined cupcake pan spoon 2/3 – 3/4 of the way up. Bake for around 17 minutes or until a tester comes out clean. Allow to cool completely before filling.

Chocolate-Whiskey Ganache
8 oz. bittersweet chocolate
2/3 cup heavy cream (I used half-half because I forgot the heavy cream!)
2 tbsp butter, room temperature
1-2 tbsp whiskey (like Jameson) (I also used more whiskey, I know, I know, no one is surprised by that!)

In a heat proof bowl, heat the heavy cream in the microwave until warm, but not boiling. Add the chopped chocolate to warm cream. Once the chocolate is melted add the whiskey. Taste. If it doesn’t have enough of a kick, add some more! Keep adding until you are pleased. Add the butter.

Before you fill the cakes, allow the ganache to cool. You want it to be thick, but not set. I put mine in the freezer for about 10 minutes. While waiting for the ganache to thicken take a melon-baller or spoon and scoop out the middle of the cakes. Poor you, you have to eat the middles now! Spoon the ganache into the hole you just made. Allow the cakes to sit for 1-2 hours or until the ganache has fully set (aka not runny).



Bailey’s Frosting
3-4 cups powdered sugar
½ cup butter, room temperature
3-4 tbsp Bailey’s Irish cream

In a large bowl beat the butter for several minutes, until light and fluffy. Add the powdered sugar, several tbsp at a time. The frosting will be very thick, almost ball like. On a slow speed, slowly add the cream until the frosting is spreadable.
Now you’re ready to frost! Once frosted you get to do the best part: eat them! Enjoy!!
Here are a few pictures from the evening as well!



May you have the hindsight to know where you've been,
The foresight to know where you are going,
And the insight to know when you have gone too far.
Sláinte!

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