Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Mancakes (Chocolate Stout Cupcakes with Salty Peanut Butter Frosting and Beer-Candied Bacon)

Bacon and beer seem to be all the rage right now. These ingredients are popping up in tons of recipes from main dishes to sweet desserts.Who loves bacon and beer? Men, and no one more than my husband. So I made these chocolate stout cupcakes topped with salty peanut butter frosting and beer-candied bacon for him and dubbed them Mancakes. How did they taste? Sweet, salty, decadent, and sinful. My husband declared them one of the best things he ever ate. And they fit this month's What's Baking theme: Sweet and Salty.

Chocolate Stout Cupcakes
adapted from Martha Stewart Cupcakes

1 and 1/2 cups cake flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup cocoa (unsweetened)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 and 1/4 cups stout beer (I used a bitter chocolate stout.)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a cupcake tin with 12 paper cupcake liners. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, and salt and set aside. In another bowl, beat together oil, vinegar, vanilla, and beer with a hand mixer on medium-high speed. Add flour mixture and beat until smooth on low speed, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Fill cupcake liners about 3/4 full and bake about 20–25 minutes.

Salty Peanut Butter Frosting
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 stick butter (room temperature)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 to 3 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 to 3 tablespoons milk

Beat together peanut butter, butter, salt, and vanilla until smooth. Add powdered sugar one cup at a time and milk one tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached. Beat until smooth and fluffy. 

Beer Candied Bacon

1 pound bacon 
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons beer (I used Saranac Caramel Porter.)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place a wire cooling rack on top and drape the slices of bacon over the rack, overlapping if necessary. Place in oven and bake for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, whisk together brown sugar and beer in a small bowl. After 10 minutes, carefully remove the bacon from the oven and brush one side with the beer syrup. Flip each slice of bacon and brush the other side with the syrup. Return to oven and bake for more 10 minutes. Repeat process two more times until bacon is crispy. Cool on wire rack for at least 1 hour.