A Different Spice Cake

I've mentioned before how awesome it is having bakers in the office. Well, it turns out even bakers enjoy the perks of their own baker friends. The other day, my pal Lisa stopped by my desk with this deep, dark cupcake. It would have been rude to turn it down!

This was, she explained, a Mexican chocolate cake with matching frosting. I could tell before I'd even put a morsel in my mouth, as the telltale, sweet and spicy aroma hit my nose. "This is gonna be good," I thought to myself.

I was, of course, correct. Tasting the cake and frosting separately, I definitely picked up the spices in the rich chocolate, which was about ten times as intense in the frosting as in the cupcake. The cupcakes were gifted to Lisa for her birthday. She asked her friend for the recipe, which she's graciously shared with me, so I'm paying it forward.

The cupcake itself was a standard chocolate cake recipe, but as I suspected/detected, a pinch of cayenne was added to the batter for a tiny kick.

Frosting Ingredients:

  • 1 stick (½ cup) [edit] salted butter, room temperature
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I prefer dark chocolate cocoa, but any works)
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 ½ cups powdered sugar (more or less to achieve desired consistency)

To Make Frosting:

Cream butter in an electric mixer on medium-speed until smooth and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Then add cocoa powder and cinnamon and mix on low-speed until combined. Gradually add in the milk and powdered sugar, alternately, until combined. Then beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, another 3-5 minutes. (Add in more powdered sugar if consistency is too thin.)

***To frost 24 cupcakes as I did I’d recommend making a double batch of the frosting. But if you’re just spreading it on with a knife, one batch should be plenty!


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