Baking Days 4 & 5: Chocolate and Coffee, Two of My Favorite Things

So far I’ve stuck to cupcakes that don’t include chocolate  – pumpkin, maple, plain vanilla. After making non-chocolate cupcakes a few weeks in a row, I finally changed up my recipe selection. I also decided on brownies. Since I still wanted to include coffee after my failed Pumpkin Spice Latte attempt, this recipe looked perfect. This time I was determined to taste coffee in every bite.

My process has become less interesting now that I’m more used to the act of baking. Good for me, bad for blog content. These days I can mostly mix up the correct ingredients and follow instructions without incident. Of course I still get flour all over the counter, but I don’t see that changing in the near future.

The result:

brownie1 FYI – the recipe said to line the pan with foil. I’d never done this for brownies before but why not?

I should call these “Hollywood celebrity” brownies because they were very thin and very rich. Also delicious, do not forget delicious. I don’t know what I expected coffee to taste like in a baked good. Did I think they’d embody my usual caramel latte from McDonald’s? (What? They’re cheaper than Starbucks and still good.) The coffee made the chocolate extremely rich while toning down the sweetness factor.

So far I’ve avoided icing, but this time I made the corresponding mocha glaze. Mixes together in five minutes. Extremely worth the effort, both for taste and presentation:


They lasted about two days in my house.

The Nutella cupcakes I selected for my next baking day, coincidentally, also required coffee. I was excited to make a cupcake with actual Nutella in the batter. I mean…Nutella. Cupcake. How could this turn out bad? I imagined a gooey, super-chocolatey cake. The directions called for a stand mixer, but whatever, like anyone really needs a stand mixer. (Relax, it’s just a defense mechanism to make myself feel better about not having one.) As expected I wound up with Nutella on my arm and flour on the toaster. At least the cupcakes looked good:


I thought they looked more like “normal cupcakes” than my last few attempts, which resembled muffins. I even got creative and added the glaze from the brownies. My mom suggested the candy corn since we had some. It went with the cute Halloween liners I found in the cabinet.


Great presentation, but unfortunately these were a disappointment. They tasted chocolatey but also way too dry and crumbly. (Even though my mom and sister swear they liked the cupcakes.) The glaze didn’t add much moisture. It must have been something I did. I’m thinking a) I overmixed the batter, and b) I’m underestimating the importance of frosting.  It might be time for me to venture into the great wide world of confectioner’s sugar.


5 thoughts on “Baking Days 4 & 5: Chocolate and Coffee, Two of My Favorite Things

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