Well, I’m home from school for the holidays, although it doesn’t feel like it. I’m slowly regaining my spirit after an incident last week, but that’s life for you. And although lately a lot of my baking has been a flop, I did somewhat make cupcakes. I put too much batter in because the overfill resulted in a flat and brittle top. At least they tasted good, especially with peanut buttercream on top.

I halved the recipe and got 6 cupcakes. The recipe below makes 12 cupcakes and without leftover frosting. To halve the 3 eggs, use 1 egg, 1 Tbsp water, 1 1/2 tsp oil, and 1 tsp baking powder.

Also, did you know maraschino cherries get their flavor from almond extract? Seriously. When you come across almond extract, smell it. If you are not a fan, sub the almond for more vanilla.

Chocolate Brownie Cupcakes with Peanut Buttercream

3/4 cup flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup butter, melted and cooled slightly
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp almond extract
3 eggs
2/3 cup chocolate chips

Peanut Buttercream
2 2/3 Tbsp peanut butter
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
2-3 Tbsp milk

1. Preheat oven to 325F. Line muffin pan with paper liners.

2. Mix together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt.

3. In another bowl, beat together both sugars and butter until smooth. Beat in vanilla and almond extracts. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour mixture, stirring by hand until combined. Stir in chocolate chips.

4. Scoop batter into prepared liners. Bake for 28 minutes or until a toothpick comes out with a few crumbs and a little melted chocolate. The tops will not spring back when touched. Let cool for 10 minutes in pan before removing to cooling rack.

5. Peanut Buttercream: Cream peanut butter until light and fluffy. Beat in sugar and vanilla. Add milk until desired consistency is achieved. Frost cooled cupcakes.

Both recipes make enough for 12 cupcakes without leftover frosting.

Sources: Cupcake, Frosting

Evil alien cat?

Don’t know if you can tell, but Murray’s eyes are closed.