15
Feb
09

cupcake truffles

Seems like cupcake truffles are pretty popular lately, so I figured I should I should get in on this craze before it gets outdated 🙂  I was actually inspired to make these things after going to the farmer’s market on Valentine’s day with my friends Rich, Kristine and Eric (how romantic!).  Kristine had recommended these truffles before, but I never seemed to have time to make them.. until now!  Since I had the rest of the day to myself (such a loser), I started looking online for some inspiration, and agreed with Kristine that red velvet cupcake truffles would be perfect for Valentine’s Day weekend 🙂

Red velvet cupcake truffles

Red velvet cupcake truffles

Normally, truffles are merely balls of ganache that have been firmed and chilled, then covered with melted chocolate and sometimes additionally topped with something like cocoa powder, crushed nuts, icing decorations, etc.  Cupcake truffles are similar, except they merely consist of balls of baked cupcake/cake mushed up along with some frosting to bring them together (I chose cream cheese frosting since that traditionally goes with red velvet cakes).   These balls need to be frozen, not just merely chilled in the fridge (since it’s harder to keep them in a ball than ganache), but this causes additional complications when it comes to application of the chocolate topping.

The chocolate topping on a truffle is normally just that: chocolate.  No heavy cream, butter, corn syrup, etc to form it into some kind of ganache.  Ganache at room temperature tends to be a bit soft and fudge-like… for truffles, you really want that crisp “snap” when you bite into it, whether it has a ganache or cake filling.  To really maintain that crisp exterior, you need to melt the chocolate as little as possible (I used an instant-read thermometer to make sure the temperature does not go above 94 deg F, which is when the crystals start to break apart).  This can be done quite easily without a thermometer though, even in a microwave!

You can actually just use cake made from a cake mix and some canned frosting to make these, but I don’t think they will taste as good as homemade cakes!  I decided to use my favorite red velvet cake recipe which supposedly won many awards at state fairs.

Red Velvet Cake (or cupcakes)

recipe received from a friend, who probably found it on egullet

Ingredients

  • Cake batter:
  • 2-1/2 c    sifted cake flour
  • 2 c    sugar
  • 1 c    buttermilk
  • 1 tsp    soda
  • 1 tsp    vanilla
  • 1 tsp    salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 T    cocoa
  • 1 T    white vinegar
  • 1 oz    red food color
  • 2 c    vegetable oil – “buttery flavor” is good, but if you can’t find it, add 1/2 to 1 cup of Butter Flavor Popcorn Topping oil (to make a total of 2C oil) – available in the popcorn section at the store
  • Cream cheese frosting:
  • 1 stick butter (room temp)
  • 1 tsp    vanilla
  • 8-oz pkg cream cheese  (room temp)
  • 1 box powdered sugar
  • dash salt
  • 1 c    chopped pecans

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 300F.  Lightly grease and flour two small cake pans (I used 9″ cake pans).

Ingredients

Ingredients

2. This batter is quite easy to mix since it just uses liquid fattening agents (vegetable oil and butter flavored oil).  Sift the cake flour into a bowl, then combine the rest of the batter ingredients (except the egs) into another bowl, preferably into a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.  Mix well and slowly add the sifted cake flour until combined.  Add the eggs one by one, mixing for 1 minute between each addition.  The batter will be very runny at this stage, don’t worry!

Mixing the red batter

Mixing the red batter

3. Divide the batter into the two cake pans and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out relatively neatly.

Divide into two cake pans

Divide into two cake pans

4. When the cake is done, cool on a cooling rack while you prepare the frosting.

Cool the cakes

Cool the cakes

Cream cheese frosting ingredients

Cream cheese frosting ingredients

5. Simply mix all the frosting ingredients together in a bowl, and cream until smooth (I used a hand mixer for this).  I left out the chopped pecans this time, although I always use it for cakes and cupcakes… the chopped nuts would just get in the way of the truffle centers!

Mix ingredients until creamy

Mix ingredients until creamy

Red Velvet Cupcake Truffles

Ingredients

  • Red Velvet cake and Cream Cheese frosting (see above)
  • 8+ ounces of bittersweet chocolate (or white chocolate for those wishing for variety)
  • Toppings of choice – I simply used candy sprinkles, but I would probably try chopped nuts and toasted coconuts next time.  Cocoa powder is too bitter by itself for me.

Directions

1. When the cake layers are fully cooled, dump into a large bowl and mash until it’s all broken apart…. take out some stress while you’re at it 🙂

Dump the cake into a bowl and mash away

Dump the cake into a bowl and mash away

2. Combine with the prepared frosting until the mixture is relatively homogenous.

3. Form into bowls and set aside on a cookie tray (or two) lined with parchment paper.  Don’t worry about spacing them out since you’re not planning to bake them again.  Freeze for a few hours (I’d recommend at least 3 hours).

Form into balls and freeze

Form into balls and freeze

4. When you think the cupcake balls are almost cold enough, prepare the melted chocolate using these tips:

  • -Chop the chocolate as fine as you can so that it all melts evenly.  Using a food processor will help.
  • -Microwave on high on a microwave-safe bowl for 20 seconds, then stir for 10 seconds.  Then microwave on high for 15 seconds and stir for 10 seconds.  Finally, microwave on 10 second increments until the chocolate just barely melts.  Keep stirring and let it rest for a while to make sure everything melts.

5. I used a toothpick to hold the cupcake balls while applying the chocolate with a pastry brush.  You can’t merely dip the balls into the chocolate, since they will be extremely cold, causing the melted chocolate to cool and harden immediately!  You’ll also have to apply any toppings quickly so that they adhere to the chocolate before it fully hardened.

Messy first attempts...

Messy first attempts...

6. Store the truffles in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to serve.  I placed them in mini-cupcake wrappers to keep them nice and organized.

The truffles should have a nice red center to go along with the crisp chocolate coating!

Red center

Red center

Great minds must think alike, because my good friend Sandra happened to make similar cupcake truffles this weekend as well!  She even made me a special “Angry Baker” Truffle 🙂  She’s obviously much more talented than me when it comes to decorating, I really need to learn a thing or two from her… I had a lot of mishaps while trying to simply coat my balls of cupcake with chocolate…

Sandras truffles

Sandra's truffles

Angry Baker truffle!

Angry Baker truffle!

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13 Responses to “cupcake truffles”


  1. 1 jk
    February 15, 2009 at 7:46 pm

    omg those lolipops are so cute!!

  2. 2 kimeng
    February 15, 2009 at 8:17 pm

    angry baker truffle, haha!

  3. February 15, 2009 at 11:11 pm

    man, your photos look dSLR quality! thanks for treating us to lunch again! i was still full by dinnertime…

  4. 4 karen jean
    February 15, 2009 at 11:15 pm

    dang it. i really want one right now. (or two, or three..)

  5. 5 Julie
    February 17, 2009 at 4:43 pm

    Those were soooo yummy. Thanks for bringing them!

  6. 6 sherry
    February 17, 2009 at 9:44 pm

    HEY! i was gonna do the popsicle lollipop thing too!!! i was gonna make them to give out for christmas. awesome!

  7. 7 Lauren
    March 4, 2009 at 10:39 am

    How many servings does your recipe make?

  8. 8 angrybaker
    March 4, 2009 at 10:49 am

    Unfortunately I don’t quite remember… there were a lot though, probably more than 50? And actually, you can make even more. I got tired and made pretty large balls of the cupcake concoction since they were taking so long to roll out. If I made them smaller, I could probably have approached 75+. If that’s too many, it might be a good idea to halve the recipe.

  9. 9 Susie
    April 4, 2009 at 9:06 am

    this may be a dumb question but when you said soda in the ingredients, did you mean baking soda or soda soda?

  10. 10 angrybaker
    April 4, 2009 at 5:56 pm

    Haha oops sorry… that would be baking soda 🙂

  11. 11 Leah
    May 25, 2009 at 11:48 am

    Hi,

    Thank You for this instruction and tip. I have some questions for you if you don’t mind. Please email me back. I am trying..to gather as much information as I can on paper. Trying to start a cupcake buisness is Wisconsin myself. Small. I am not sure about the duplication of recipies.. it seems from blogging that many people duplicate. What are the laws in creating your own recepie or calling the recepie your own? If you change one ingredient for example .. can you use that and call it yours? Thank You

    Leah


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