These gorgeous Gluten Free Chocolate Cupcakes are topped with an indulgent glossy chocolate ganache. The caramelised hazelnut spires take a bit of time but certainly add the wow factor.
Recipe: Gluten Free Chocolate Hazelnut Cupcakes
Cupcakes Ingredients (makes 14 cupcakes)
- 1 x 400g Delicious Alchemy Gluten Free Vanilla Sponge mix
- 180g soft unsalted butter or dairy free alternative
- 25g cocoa powder
- 60g sour cream or dairy free yoghurt
- 3 large eggs
Chocolate Ganache Ingredients
- 200g dark chocolate
- 200ml double cream or dairy free alternative
- 20 whole skinned hazelnuts
- 150g caster sugar
- 30ml water
- 20 cocktail sticks
Let’s get baking!
For the cake:
- Preheat the oven to 180C/160C fan
- Line some cupcake tins with 14 paper cases
- Place the cake mix, butter, cocoa powder, sour cream and eggs into a large bowl and beat together with an electric whisk for 15 seconds
- Divide the mixture between the cupcake cases, filling three-quarters full
- Bake for 18 minutes until risen and springy to the touch
- Leave to cool in the tin for 3 minutes before lifting out and leaving to cool completely
For the chocolate ganache:
- Chop the chocolate into small pieces, add to a bowl and set aside
- Heat the cream in a saucepan over a low heat until steaming, but do not let it boil
- Pour the hot cream over the chocolate, and leave to stand for 3 minutes
- Stir the ganache together to create a smooth glossy sauce, and set aside for 15-30 minutes to thicken into a spreadable consistency
- Spread the ganache over the top of the cupcakes.
- Gently insert the pointed end of a cocktail stick into the side of each hazelnut
- Place two heavy chopping boards, one on top of the other, at the edge of your work surface with the sides extending over the edge. Place some newspaper on the floor, directly under chopping boards (to catch the drips of caramel)
- Fill your sink with cold water
- Mix together the sugar and water in a small saucepan, and place over a low heat and allow the sugar to dissolve and bubble to form a clear syrup, stir once to ensure all the sugar has dissolved
- Turn up the heat and allow the syrup to simmer and bubble until it starts to turn a golden amber colour. Do not stir!
- Once the sugar looks a deep golden caramel colour, remove from the heat and place the base of the pan briefly into the sink of cold water to halt the cooking process. Do not get any water in the pan
- Return the pan to the hob top and wait for 2 minutes until the syrup has started to cool slightly and thicken, test it by dipping one of the hazelnuts in. It should coat the nut in a thick layer of syrup
- Quickly dip your skewered hazelnuts into the caramel, rotating so they are evenly coated
- Trap the ends of the cocktail sticks between the two chopping boards, letting the nuts hang over the edge so the caramel drips down towards the newspaper on the floor. It should form a thin spike of caramel. Leave to set. Once set, carefully remove the cocktail sticks and place the caramelised hazelnuts on top of your cupcakes, with the tall spike of caramel facing upwards.
Our baking tips:
The caramel will be very hot – do not under any circumstances touch it. If you do get some on your hands, run them under cold water immediately.
If your caramel is not thick enough to form stands, simply coat your hazelnuts in the caramel and place onto a greased baking tray to set. Use them whole or chop into to a delicious nutty caramel sprinkle to decorate your cupcakes.
This recipe came from our National Cupcake Week series in 2014.