I made these yesterday for my dear friend and colleague that just got tenure. He and everyone at the party loved them, especially his daughter Maya! I really liked the graham cracker base and meringue frosting with the piece of Hershey’s chocolate a dust of graham crackers.
Graham Cracker Base
- 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (from 20 squares)
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup mini chips
Chocolate Espresso Cupcake
- 2 cups cake flour
- 3/4 cup plus 1 teaspoon Hershey’s Dark cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 3/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2/3 cup boiling water
- 1 tablespoon of espresso powder
- 6 egg whites
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 package of Hershey’s chocolate bars (for decoration)
Position a rack in the lower third of the oven. Heat the oven to 350 degrees.
Graham Cracker Base
- Reserve 2 tablespoons of crumbs to sprinkle on the top later.
- Place remaining graham cracker crumbs in a bowl with butter and mix to combine.
- Add approximately 1 tablespoon of mixture to each cup and firmly press crumbs down with the back of a small cup.
- Sprinkle the mini chips on top of the graham cracker base.
- Bake for about 8 minutes. Cool.
- In a large bowl, sift together flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
- Then combine eggs, buttermilk, oil and vanilla in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Add sugar and mix until combined.
- Then add flour mixture. Blend at low and then increase to medium. Beat for 2 minutes until blended and smooth. Add boiling water with 1 tbsp of espresso powder. Batter will be thin.
- Let batter rest for 15 minutes and stir again gently before using.
- Fill liners with prepared crusts three-quarters full with batter.
- Bake about 16-20 minutes until done.
- Cool in pan for 5 minutes and then remove to a rack to cool completely
- Combine egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar in the heatproof bowl of a stand mixer.
- Set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water without letting the bottom of the bowl touch the water in the saucepan.
- Hold the handle of the bowl while whisking the egg white mixture until the sugar is dissolved… about 4 minutes. Then transfer bowl to the stand mixer.
- Using the whisk attachment, beat the mixture, starting on low and increasing to high speed. Beat until stiff, glossy peaks form and the meringue has cooled, 5 to 7 minutes.
- Add the vanilla and whisk just to combine. Use frosting immediately.
- Place the frosting in a pastry bag fitted with a Wilton 4B tip.
- Pipe high swirls on the cupcakes and brown the meringue using a kitchen torch and serve immediately.
- Using a kitchen torch lightly toast marshmallow frosting.
- Place one small piece of chocolate on the top and sprinkle with graham cracker dust.