These turned out so great, I ended up making 2 batches, that's right, 48 freaking cupcakes, because I wanted some for my family too! I frosted them with Vanilla Mint Buttercream, and garnished with half an Andes Creme de Menthe Thin (my friend's idea) and a sprig of fresh mint (my idea) and they turned out FABULOUS and DELICIOUS. See for yourself. And then make some for yourself!
Chocolate Mint Cupcakes
Adapted from One Sweet Cupcake
Makes 24 cupcakes
4 oz. high-quality bittersweet chocolate bar, chopped into small pieces
1/2 cup boiling water
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cocoa powder
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Place chocolate in the bowl of a stand mixer. Pour boiling water over chocolate and let sit for 1 minute. Using the whisk attachment, mix until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
Add sour cream, applesauce, oil, eggs, vanilla, and peppermint. Mix well.
In a separate bowl, sift flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cocoa powder. Turn the stand mixer on low, add dry ingredients and mix until just incorporated and smooth.
Line two standard muffin tins with paper baking cups. Fill each cup two-thirds full with batter. Bake about 20 minutes, until the tops spring back at the touch of your finger and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Remove from tins and cool completely on wire rack before icing.
Frost with Vanilla Mint Buttercream and garnish with halved Andes Creme de Menthe Thins and fresh peppermint leaves, as shown.