This month The Cake Slice Bakers decided to make a white chocolate layer cake, which is just perfect for Christmas in my opinion. The recipe calls for either 3 x 8" cake tins or 2 x 9" cake tins, and guess what? I only have 2 cake tins and they are both 6". So I headed out to the local supply store to get some 8" tins only to discover that they were $12 each!!! Ouch! Way too much money for me at the moment, so I decided to make cupcakes instead.
I have to say this cake was not what I expected. The cake was moist and light in texture, but I could barely taste the white chocolate. The icing on the other hand was great a delicious combination of cream cheese and white chocolate.
White Chocolate Cupcakes (adapted from Nancie McDermott)
Makes 30 cupcakes
For the cupcakes:
2 ½ cups cake flour, sifted
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
4 ounces white chocolate, chopped
½ cup boiling water
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 cups caster sugar
4 eggs, separated
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk
For the frosting:
6 ounces white chocolate, chopped
12 ounces cream cheese, softened
3 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
¾ tsp vanilla extract
3 cups icing sugar
Method for the cupcakes:
- Heat the oven to 180C and line 3 12-hole muffin trays with cupcake cases.
- Combine the flour, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl, and stir with a fork to mix them well.
- Bring 3 inches of water to an active simmer in the bottom of a double boiler or a saucepan that will accommodate a medium heat proof bowl so that it sits snugly over the water. Melt the white chocolate in the top of the double boiler or in the bowl over the simmering water. Stir often, and then pour in the ½ cup of boiling water and stir to mix well. Remove from the heat.
- In a medium bowl, combine the butter and the sugar and beat with a mixed at medium speed to mix them together well. Add the egg yolks, one by one, beating each time to keep the mixture smooth. Add the white chocolate and the vanilla, and stir well to mix.
- Add about a third of the flour mixture, and then about half of the buttermilk, beating with a mixer at low speed just long enough after each addition to make the flour or buttermilk disappear. Mix in another third of the flour, remaining buttermilk and then the last of the flour.
- In a medium bowl, beat the egg whites at medium speed until they are foamy and opaque. Continue beating at high speed until they swell into thick, pillowy mounds and hold peaks that are stiff, but not fry. Add one third of the egg white mixture to the bowl of batter, and fold it in gently using a spatula. Add the remaining egg whites and continue to fold with a light touch, until the egg whites are blended in well, with only a few streaks showing.
- Transfer the batter to the cupcake cases and bake for approximately 20 minutes until the cupcakes are golden brown and a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- Allow the cupcakes to cool.
Method for the White Chocolate Frosting:
- In the top of a double boiler or a heatproof bowl, melt the white chocolate over hot, not simmering, water, stirring often. Remove from the heat once melted and let cool to lukewarm.
- Transfer the melted white chocolate to a large bowl, and add the cream cheese, butter and vanilla. Beat together at medium speed until you have a smooth sauce.
- Add the confectioners sugar and beat until smooth.