I dearly love this recipe and have been making it for years, sometimes as a cake and sometimes as cupcakes (be warned: this makes a lot of cupcakes). The cake is chocolatey and rich, with a lovely note of Guinness that is definitely there but not overpowering. It is never dry, and keeps quite well. And the frosting! Let’s just say that cream cheese in frosting is mostly always a good thing. As it is here. Nigella is genius. But of course. Also! My cookbook is due tomorrow — while I’m traveling and unfortunately not able to bake. If I were home I’d definitely get in the kitchen to whip up a batch up these beauties to celebrate. Bon voyage, little book!
Makes about 20 cupcakes
Butter for pan
1 cup Guinness stout
10 tablespoons unsalted butter
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
2 cups sugar
6 tablespoons sour cream
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
8 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
1/2 cup heavy cream
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 12-cup cupcake tin with liners (if you have two you may bake the batter all at once or do it in batches as I did). In a large saucepan, combine Guinness and butter. Place over medium-low heat until butter melts, then remove from heat. Add cocoa and superfine sugar and whisk to blend.
In a small bowl, combine sour cream, eggs and vanilla; whisk well. Add to Guinness mixture. Add flour and baking soda, and whisk again until smooth. Pour into prepared tin/s, and bake until risen and firm, about 25 minutes, and a tester inserted in a cupcake comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool 5 minutes in pan, then turn out onto a rack to cool completely.
For the topping: Using an electric mixer or by hand (note: electric mixer is much easier!), mix confectioners’ sugar to break up lumps. Add cream cheese and blend until smooth. Add heavy cream, and mix until smooth and spreadable.
Ice all of the cupcakes with the frosting.