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Backstory"I adore simple pleasures. They are the last refuge of the complex." - Oscar Wilde
Simplicity. The definition of basic. Without complications. The nitty gritty if you will. Sometimes, that's the kind of cupcake I want. Something without any special reservation. Without flair. An absence of the exotic can be peaceful and calming. A quick rendezvous in the kitchen and near instant gratification.
It's comparable to finishing the last sentence of a good book, relaxing to a song you haven't heard since that dance where you last truly let loose in front of a crowd, or the smell of an old cologne that reminds you of that someone on that some night only you and he know of.
A classic cupcake like this needs no fanfare. No parade. No list of impossible ingredients or extraneous labor. It's satisfying in its old school ways. Old fashion chocolate cake, with classic creamy peanut butter frosting. I don't need to describe it. You've had it before.
Take a few minutes to spend with your oven and your mixer, then use these cupcakes to take time with friends. Or even better - cupcake, a big glass of milk, yourself, and a moment of silence.
- 2 cups of boiling water
- 1 1/2 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 3/4 cups of all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons of baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt
- 1 cup of butter, room temperature
- 2 1/8 cups of sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
- Peanut Butter Frosting:
- 1/2 cup of butter, softened
- 1 cup of creamy peanut butter
- 3 tablespoons of milk
- 1 1/2 - 2 cups of powdered sugar
- chocolate chips (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350. Pour boiling water over cocoa powder and mix throughly until smooth. Let cool.
- Combine the flour, salt, baking soda and powder together in a separate bowl.
- Cream together the sugar and butter and beat until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, and then add the vanilla. Add the flour and the cocoa mixture alternatively in a dry-wet-dry method, beginning and ending with the dry.
- Place in cupcake papers and bake for 18-22 minutes or until a cakes tester comes out clean. Let cook on a wire rack.
- Peanut Butter Frosting: Beat the butter and peanut butter until smooth and creamy. Add the milk and then the powdered sugar until desired sweetness. Spread over cooled cupcakes. (Optional: I melted some chocolate chips in the microwave and flicked it on with a fork. Hey, a little flair can be fun.)