One of the members of Foodbuzz suggested I participate in a cupcake contest hosted by her blog/website, Gourmet Girl Magazine. There are some awesome entries if you'd like to check them out, or even vote for your favorite (wink, wink) cupcake entry, Summer 2009 Virtual Cupcake Crawl.
I wanted to try something a little different for summer desserts as well, so here goes. I can't take credit for the whole recipe, as it's really several ideas from many I've collected over time. As you read this recipe, I'm sure your wheels will be turning as to how you can customize these little cuties using your favorite ice cream, cookies, and liqueur. (I'm thinking almond macaroons and Kahlua....)
Frozen Irish Cream & Cookie Cupcakes
makes 3 dozen
36 foil cupcake liners
1 box of Devil's Food cake mix
1 and 1/3 cups of water
1/2 cup canola oil
3 large eggs
1 box chocolate instant pudding
4 tablespoons Irish Cream liqueur, (plus 1/4 cup, set aside)
1 and 1/2 cups vanilla bean ice cream, softened
10 Oreo/chocolate sandwich cookies, roughly crushed
1/2 jar hot fudge topping, warmed in microwave
2 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp
4 tablespoons Irish Cream liqueur
1/4 cup melted semi-sweet chocolate
1/2 jar hot fudge topping, unheated
3 tablespoons Hershey's Cocoa Powder
2 cups confectioner's sugar
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Place foil liners in muffin pans and set aside (tried paper liners; foil works best for this recipe.)
In a large bowl, combine: cake mix, water, oil, eggs, instant pudding and Irish Cream liqueur. Beat on low speed for about a minute, then increase speed to medium, beat for 3 minutes. Fill cupcake liners a little less than 1/2 full. You don't want the cake to rise too high because you will be using additional toppings. Bake for about 15 minutes, remove from pan to a cooling rack. Pour the 1/4 cup of Irish Cream into a small ramekin or bowl. Lightly brush the tops of the warm cupcakes with the liqueur, using more if needed. Let it soak into the cakes.In a small, ziploc bag, place chocolate sandwich cookies inside. Seal, and use a rolling pin to crush and break. You want to leave a few large pieces for extra crunch, so don't crush too finely.
Place the ice cream in a bowl to soften.
Stir occasionally until milkshake consistency. Sprinkle each cupcake with Oreo cookie crumbs. Heat the 1/2 jar of hot fudge topping in the microwave, and drizzle a small amount on each cupcake. Gently spoon the softened ice cream over the cookie crumbs and fudge topping, smooth with a spoon. Place back into clean muffin pans (or use cookie sheets), and freeze for one hour.
While the cakes are freezing, you can make the frosting. In a large bowl, combine the softened butter, Irish Cream, cocoa, melted chocolate and fudge sauce (unheated). Alternate adding the confectioner's sugar and whipping cream until frosting is spreadable and thick. Continue beating for about 2 minutes until light and fluffy. If you want it really chocolaty, add additional cocoa in small amounts.
When cakes are completely frozen, pipe or spoon a dollop of frosting on each and sprinkle with chopped, semi-sweet chocolate. Keep frozen until ready to serve. Enjoy this dessert and your summer!