If you can’t keep a secret from Martha Stewart, please don’t read this!
During a recent trip to the library, I picked up a copy of Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes. I didn’t think I would actually make any; remember, the Sandwich Hoss family can’t just have a batch of cupcakes around, or we will eat every last one of them in one sitting. But the recipe for ginger cupcakes was just so tempting. (I seem to be going through a ginger “thing.” First those amazing cookies, now these cupcakes.) And I had a snow day. (That’s right, a snow day! In October! If you know anyone who teaches, you know that teachers enjoy snow days much, much more than students do.) Can you just see it? The snow was dumping down. I had soft music tinkling in the background. I was reading a British murder mystery. The ONLY thing that could have rounded it out was a ginger cupcake.
So I decided to mess around with Martha Stewart’s recipe. I know! Who does that?! Oh god, please don’t tell her. I imagine she gets really mad about things like that. She’s a scary lady.
I scaled the recipe back and came up with a recipe that made three cupcakes in a normal cupcake pan. And they were really pretty delicious, especially when topped with my new favorite: yogurt frosting. But I couldn’t just leave it at that. I wanted to make them even better. Besides, three cupcakes is a weird amount. I can’t bake odd numbers of foodstuffs and feel okay about it. It’s… unsettling. So last night I tinkered again and made them chocolatey this time, and filled two custard cups with the batter. So instead of three normal cupcakes, I had two larger ones. (Yes, I realize there’s really no logic behind that. Three normal-sized cupcakes unsettles me, but the same amount of batter in two larger cupcakes is pleasing. I know. I know. If you’re thinking that Mr. Sandwich Hoss must be a real saint to put up with the likes of me, you’re partially right.)
Anyway. These cupcakes are awfully good. That Martha Stewart really knows what she’s doing. This version is the tinkered-with recipe, with chocolate and scaled back. But if you want to make a normal-sized batch, I do recommend her book. Lots of great recipes.
Chocolate-ginger cupcakes (adapted from Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes)
Makes two cupcakes in custard-cup sized dishes, or maybe jumbo muffin tins
1/2 cup flour
1/4 t baking soda
1 Tbs unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup sugar
2 Tbs plus 1 tsp molasses
1 Tbs beaten egg
3 Tbs melted butter
1 scant Tbs water
2 Tbs minced ginger–the first time I used crystallized ginger, the second time I used fresh. Both were equally delicious.
Preheat oven (or toaster oven) to 350. Butter two ramekins or custard cups or what have you.
Mix dry ingredients (flour, soda, cocoa powder, and salt) in a small dish.
Mix sugar, molasses, egg, melted butter, water, and ginger in a larger bowl. Add dry ingredients and whisk until blended. Fill baking dishes about 2/3 full, and bake for about 25 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean.
Add your favorite frosting to the top. I’ve been on a yogurt frosting kick lately. I mix two or three tablespoons soft butter with a about 1/4 cup of plain yogurt, and then add in powdered sugar until the consistency seems right. It tastes just like cream cheese frosting!
And remember, if that Martha lady asks, I did NOT tinker with her recipe!