I was torn between Bananas Foster and Black Bottom for the 2nd letter of my year. Black Bottom won out for 2 reasons: Mrs Cram wanted them and they seemed to be much easier than Bananas Foster. I was correct about “easier”. It’s amazing how time consuming icing is! Since I have only 1 bowl for my KitchenAid, washing in between is involved AND there’s the extra step of actually getting the icing on the cupcake. Lots of time saved by not icing and I reused the bowl without washing it between making the cream cheese part and the chocolate part.
I used the Black Bottom cupcake recipe at CooksCountry.com.
For cheesecake layer:
Beat 16 ounces of cream cheese with 1/2 cup sugar and 1/4 tsp salt until smooth. Beat in 2 egg whites and 2 tablespoons sour cream until combined, about a minute. Stir in 1/2 cup miniature chocolate chips and set aside.
For chocolate layer:
Combine 1 1/4 cups sugar, 1 1/2 cups AP flour, 1/2 cup Dutch-processed cocoa, 1 1/4 tsp baking soda in mixer bowl and whisk together. Add 3/4 cups sour cream, 1 1/3 cups water, 1 stick unsalted butter (melted and cooled slightly), and 1 tsp vanilla extract and mix on low until just combined.
Divide chocolate batter evenly among 24 lined cupcake cups. Top each with 1 rounded tablespoonful of cream cheese mixture. (apparently I forgot to photograph before baking). Bake at 400 degrees for 23-25 minutes, until tops begin to crack. Cool for 10 minutes in pan before transferring to wire racks. Store in the frig.
These cupcakes turned out to be quite delicious. They were moist but still a bit airy. The cream cheese and chocolate complemented each other nicely and the mini chocolate chips provided a bit of textural contrast. Mr Shuck rated them 2.75 to 3 ❤’s.
My complaints: The chocolate flavor could have been stronger. I used cocoa from the bulk bins at the Central Market, led there by one of the bakers who happened to be wandering about the store. I was going to buy Droste, but he told me the bulk cocoa was better. I don’t know if he was correct about it being better than Droste or not, but I didn’t think the cupcakes ended up with a very rich flavor (LOVED the almost black color though). I have ordered some Cacao Barry (French Callebaut) Extra Brut cocoa and may attempt these again. CooksCountry also used just egg whites because they wanted to obtain a whiter cream cheese filling. I think I’ll a whole egg instead next time so the cheesecake layer will set up a bit firmer. It seemed a bit too loose.