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Chocolate Beer and Bacon Cupcakes

Ease of Preparation: Moderate

Preparation Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 1 hour, combined

Servings: 1 cupcake

Recipe By: Laurie McNamara

From:  Simply Scratch

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Chocolate Beer and Bacon Cupcakes

Crave-worthy chocolate beer and bacon cupcakes bring together our favorite indulgences in one adorable treat.

Ingredients
Cupcakes
4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped (not chocolate chips)
3/4 cup unsweetened dark (black) cocoa powder
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules
1 cup stout beer
1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon sea salt
2  eggs
1/3 cup sour cream
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Stout Glaze
1/2 cup stout beer
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Maple-glazed bacon
4  strips thick slab bacon
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
Frosting
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons strained maple bacon drippings
3 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2-4 tablespoons whole milk
Directions
For the cupcakes:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and line two 12-cup muffin tins with cupcake liners.

In a medium-sized bowl, combine cocoa powder, chopped semi-sweet chocolate and instant coffee granules.

In a medium saucepan, pour in the cup of stout and add the stick of butter. Bring to low simmer and then pour the stout/butter over the chocolate/cocoa mixture. Stir until the chocolate has melted and is smooth. Set aside to cool slightly.

In another bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl beat together the two eggs, vanilla extract and sour cream. Slowly pour in the cooled, chocolate mixture and stir.

Next, add in the dry ingredients and stir until incorporated.

Divide the cupcake batter among the 24 cupcake liners and bake for 15-18 minutes or until a cake tester comes back clean.

For the glaze:
While the cupcakes are baking, combine 1/2 cup of beer, 2 tablespoons of butter and dark brown sugar into the same medium saucepan used for the cupcakes. Heat the mixture over medium heat, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Reduce the temperature to keep warm.

When the cupcakes have finished baking, remove and let cool for 5 minutes before brushing with the stout glaze. Let the cupcakes cool completely before frosting.

For the maple glazed bacon:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a rimmed sheet pan with aluminum foil and set an oven-safe rack onto the foil.

Lay four strips of thick, slab bacon on the rack and bake for 10 minutes.

Remove, flip and brush with maple syrup and return the bacon to the oven for 5 more minutes. Repeat this step 4 to 6 more times or until the bacon is fully cooked and significantly darker in color.

Remove the bacon to a cutting board, saving the maple bacon drippings for the frosting. The bacon will be slightly sticky at first, but once it cools the bacon will firm up. After the bacon has cooled, give it a rough chop.

Strain the maple bacon drippings and reserve 2 tablespoons for the frosting.

For the frosting:
In a 10-inch skillet over medium heat, melt 6 tablespoons of butter and 2 tablespoons of strained maple bacon drippings.

Continue to cook the butter, stirring occasionally, until it turns a golden amber color, about 5-8 minutes. Watch carefully so the butter does not burn. Once browned, pour into a large bowl to cool.

Add the powdered sugar and maple syrup to the cooled brown butter. Using an electric mixer, slowly drizzle in the whole milk while mixing on low speed until you’ve reached a desired consistency.

Frost the cupcakes and garnish with chopped maple bacon.
Chef Suggestions
For a vegetarian-friendly cupcake, simply omit the 2 tablespoons of maple bacon drippings from the frosting and do not garnish with chopped maple bacon.
Featuring
Vanilla Extract
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There's nothing plain about this vanilla. Pure. Organic. Exotic. Anyone who calls our vanilla "plain" just doesn't know beans.

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