I’ve always felt that black bottom cupcakes are a delicious juxtaposition of flavors. There’s the dark, dense sweetness of the chocolate and the rich tartness of the cream cheese center. I was a little wary of trying them at first since I’m not really a fan of cheesecake (I sin to many I know) and the white center sounded suspiciously like the stuff. Luckily, I was at Steve’s parents house a few years ago and my then future mother-in-law offered me one she had baked. Thank goodness for eating out of politeness and fear of insulting the mother of the man you love!
For my Christmas baking this year I made these into ‘bite’ form to fit easier into my gift boxes. Two bites and these things are gone so its a good thing the recipe makes about 36. Although, since they are so much smaller they have less calories, thus you can eat more of them right? Right?
Black Bottom Cupcakes Bites
Adapted from the The Great Book of Chocolate
For the filling
4 ounces cream cheese, regular or reduced fat, at room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
1/4 cup mini chocolate chips
For the cupcakes1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
5 tablespoons natural unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch-process)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup water
1/3 cup unflavored vegetable oil
1 tablespoon white or cider vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Make the filling
1. Beat together the cream cheese, granulated sugar, and egg until smooth. Stir in the chocolate chips. Set aside.
Make the cupcakes
1. Adjust the rack to the center of the oven and preheat to 350°F. Spray a mini muffin tin with cooking spray.
2. In a medium bowl sift together the flour, brown sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, mix together the water, oil, vinegar, and vanilla.
3. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and stir in the wet ingredients, stirring until just smooth.
4. Divide the batter among the muffin cups, filling about 1/2 full. Spoon a teaspoon of the filling into the center of each cupcake.
5. Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until the tops are slightly golden brown and the cupcakes feel springy when gently pressed.