makes 18 to 20 cupcakes
1 cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
¼ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¾ cup sugar
½ cup (1 stick) plus 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 large egg
2 large egg yolks
½ cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2½ cups mini marshmallows
¼ cup chocolate crispy cereal
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
¼ cup heavy cream
Blue sanding sugar, for garnish (optional)
Edible flowers, for garnish (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two 12-cup cupcake tins with paper liners.
2. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the sugar and ½ cup of the butter on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 3 minutes. Add the egg and egg yolks one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in about half the flour mixture, followed by the buttermilk and vanilla, and then the remaining flour mixture. Divide the batter evenly among the prepared cupcake cups, filling each three-quarters full.
4. Bake for about 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the largest cupcake comes out clean. Remove the pan from the oven and let cool completely.
5. While the cupcakes cool, set a heat-safe bowl over a pan of simmering water (be sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water). Combine 1½ cups of the marshmallows and 3 tablespoons of the butter in the bowl and heat, stirring, until melted and completely smooth. Stir in the cereal and keep warm over very low heat until ready to serve.
6. Set a separate heat-safe bowl over a pan of simmering water (again being sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water). Combine the chocolate chips, cream, and remaining 2 tablespoons butter in the bowl and heat, stirring, until melted and smooth. Keep warm over very low heat until ready to use.
7. Arrange the remaining 1 cup mini marshmallows in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Using a kitchen torch, toast the marshmallows lightly. Let cool completely.
8. To assemble the cupcakes, use a 1-inch ring mold to punch out the center of each cupcake (but not all the way through); reserve the punched-out piece. Fill the cavities with the marshmallow-cereal mixture. Place the reserved cupcake piece on top, pressing it back into place. Spread chocolate ganache frosting across the top of each cupcake and top with toasted marshmallows. Garnish with blue sanding sugar and edible flowers, if desired.
Copyright © 2017 by MasterChef Junior, Foreword by Christina Tosi. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.