Aimez-vous le champagne? Aimez-vous le chocolat?  If so, this is your cupcake, baby.  And it is just in time for New Year's Eve festivities.  Rich dark chocolate cake and light fluffy frosting, both spiked with champagne, transform an ordinary cupcake into a dessert that is simultaneously indulgent and playful. The cupcakes don't taste overwhelmingly like champagne, but the addition of the bubbly makes them incredibly light and moist.  The real champagne flavor comes out in the icing.  

Ingredients

Cupcakes

  • 2 Cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 3/4 Cup unbleached all purpose flour
  • 3/4 Cup unsweetened dark cocoa powder (I use Hershey's Special Dark)
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 Teaspoon salt
  • 2 Large eggs (room temperature)
  • 1 Cup whole milk
  • 1/2 Cup vegetable oil
  • 2 Teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 Cup boiling water
  • 1/2 Cup champagne, sparkling wine or prosecco

Pink Champagne Frosting

  • 1 Cup unsalted butter (2 sticks)
  • 3 1/4 Cup confectioners sugar
  • 7 Tablespoon champagne
  • 2 Drops pink food coloring
  • Sugar crystals for decoration (because champagne sparkles)

Preparation

Cupcakes Step 1:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cupcakes Step 2:

Line two cupcake pans with the liners of your choice. I was feeling playful when I made these, so I used black liners with gold swirls. Seemed appropriate. You can buy all kinds of decorative cupcake liners.

Cupcakes Step 3:

Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl. Set aside.

Cupcakes Step 4:

Add the eggs, vanilla, oil and milk and beat until well combined on the medium speed of an electric mixer. Add champagne. Beat on low until completely combined. Next, using a wooden spoon, STIR the boiling water into the batter. Carefully fill each cupcake liner with the batter. Use just under a 1/4 cup per cupcake. Anything more will produce a mess and your cupcakes will overflow the rim when they bake. Trust me.

Cupcakes Step 5:

Bake for 15 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Frosting Step 1:

For the frosting cream together the sugar, butter. Beat in the vanilla. Beat in each tablespoon of champagne one at at at time. Add the two drops of food coloring and beat until the color is even.

Frosting Step 2:

You can either frost the cupcakes the old fashioned way, with a knife or small offset spatula, or you can get fancy and do any array of pipping. Once frosted sprinkle the crystallized sugar over the top.

Frosting Step 3:

Last but not least, grab your glass of champagne and enjoy.