German Chocolate Cake is my dearest Uncle Michael's favorite dessert ever. So when we took a little road trip to see him over the holidays, I knew what I had to do.
I used a recipe from Martha Stewart's Cupcakes, but filled them from a hole on top instead of slicing horizontally and filling them layer-cake style like Martha does. To make the hole, I used a new trick I learned in my cake decorating class. Dig the wide end of a large metal decorating tip into the center of the cupcake. Voila, big hole! And a donut-hole-like snack to boot. I like the injection method too, but this way is infinitely better for chunky frosting like this Coconut Pecan yumminess.
These were a bit over-the-top sweet, but not in a bad way. Even if you don't normally seek out coconut-y things, it's pretty much impossible not to love these. The base chocolate cupcake recipe is moist and really versatile too, if you don't believe me or aren't in the mood for opening your mind to German Chocolate bliss.
By the way, did you know that German Chocolate cake isn't from Germany at all? The recipe was submitted to a newspaper by a homemaker in Dallas in 1957. It used Baker's brand "German's Sweet Chocolate" as an ingredient (source), and the name was born.
German Chocolate Cupcakes
Adapted from Martha Stewart's Cupcakes
Makes 24 cupcakes
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for tins
2 cups cake flour (not self-rising), sifted, plus more for tins
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk
5 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted and cooled
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brush standard muffin tins with butter; dust with cake flour, tapping out excess, or spray generously with nonstick baking spray. Whisk together cake flour, baking soda, and salt.
2. With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, cream butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Beat in vanilla. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of buttermilk, and beating until combined after each. Beat in chocolate until combined.
3. Divide batter evenly among prepared cups, filling each three-quarters full. Bake, rotating tins halfway through, until a cake tester inserted in centers comes out clean, 20 minutes. Transfer tins to wire racks to cool 10 minutes. Run a small offset spatula or knife around the edges to loosen; turn out cupcakes onto racks and let cool completely. Cupcakes can be stored up to 3 days at room temperature in airtight containers.
4. To finish, make a hole in the top of each cupcake with a spoon or wide end of metal decorative icing tip. Fill hole with frosting and spread more on top.
Coconut Pecan Frosting
3 large egg yolks
1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk
1 1/4 cups packed light-brown sugar
1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and brought to room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 2/3 cups (7 ounces) sweetened flaked coconut
1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped
1. Combine egg yolks, evaporated milk, and brown sugar in a saucepan. Add butter, and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thick, about 10 minutes. Pour through a fine sieve into a bowl.
2. Stir in vanilla, salt, coconut, and pecans. Let cool completely. Frosting can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 1 day; bring to room temperature before using.