Sunday, November 21, 2010

Nutella filled Banana Cupcakes with Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream

I had my mind made up to make a Chocolate Nutella Cupcake when a friend suggested a Banana Nutella Cupcake instead.  Immediately I knew this was the cupcake I needed to make.  I made these yummy Banana Cupcakes from 125 Best Cupcake Recipes by Julie Hasson.

Banana Cupcakes
by Julie Hasson

Makes 24 Cupcakes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Line muffin pan with paper liners

2 ½ cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
2 cups mashed banana (about 4 large)
2 teaspoons vanilla

In a small bowl, mix together flour, baking soda and salt.

In a bowl, whisk together sugar, oil and eggs until smooth.  Add banana and vanilla, beating well. Add flour mixture, beating until smooth.

Scoop batter into prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 24-28 minutes or until tops of cupcakes spring back when lightly touched.  Let cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes.  Remove from pan and let cool completely on rack.

Once cupcakes are cooled hollow out the centers using a Cupcake Corer or knife.  Fill the hollowed out cupcakes with Nutella.  Fill a pastry bag fitted with a #10 tip with Nutella and pipe the Nutella into the center hollow of the cupcakes.  Replace the removed piece of cupcake.  Make the Chocolate Meringue Buttercream.

Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream
Yield: about 5 cups

5 large egg whites
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
Pinch of salt
1 lb. (4 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
8 ounces semi sweet chocolate

Place semi sweet chocolate in  a microwave safe bowl.  Microwave at 30 second intervals until melted.  Set aside and let cool for at least 20 minutes.

To make the frosting, combine the egg whites, sugar and salt in a heat proof bowl (I used the bowl of my Kitchenaid mixer) set over a pot of simmering water.  Heat, whisking frequently, until the mixture reaches 160 degrees F and the sugar has dissolved.  (A candy thermometer is crucial anytime you are cooking sugar.)

Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment (using the bowl of your mixer makes this step a breeze).  Beat on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form and the mixture has cooled to room temperature, about 8 minutes.

Reduce the speed to medium and add the butter, 2 tablespoons at a time, adding more once each addition has been incorporated.  If the frosting looks soupy or curdled, continue to beat on medium-high speed until thick and smooth again, about 3-5 minutes more (don't worry, it will come together!).  Stir in the vanilla extract, cooled chocolate and mix until incorporated. 
Pipe onto cupcakes using the piping tip of your choice.  Add sprinkles, jimmies, non pariels or sanding sugar of your choice.  I topped mine with real chocolate jimmies.
These cupcakes are delish!!!