- 3 tablespoons HDC Coffee Vodka
- 2 tablespoons espresso powder
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 3/4 cup hot water
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 4 teaspoons cornstarch
- 2/3 cup confectioners' sugar
- 1/2 cup HDC Coffee Vodka
- 1 cup mascarpone cheese
- cocoa powder, to dust tops
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- To make the cupcakes: In a large mixing bowl, beat together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy.
- Beat in the eggs one at a time, making sure each one is fully incorporated. Add the vanilla.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
- Alternate adding the flour mixture and milk to the butter mixture, starting and ending with the flour mixture. Scrape down the sides and mix again, to be sure everything is incorporated.
- Spoon the batter into paper-lined cupcake pans (grease the insides of the papers). Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until the cake springs back when lightly touched.
- Remove the cupcakes from the oven and place on a rack for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, tilt the pan and take the cupcakes out, returning them to the rack to finish cooling completely.
- To make the soak: Mix the espresso powder, Coffee Vodka, and sugar into the hot water.
- Using a fork, poke the tops of each cupcake a couple of times. Sprinkle or brush a small amount of the soak over each cupcake, and allow it to soak in.
- To make the frosting: Beat the whipping cream until medium peaks form.
- Whisk together the confectioners' sugar and cornstarch, and slowly add to the whipped cream along with the Coffee Vodka.
- Gently and briefly whisk in the mascarpone cheese by hand until the frosting is thick and creamy (this shouldn't take more than 4 or 5 passes with the whisk); more than that and the frosting will get grainy.
- Pipe the frosting over the cupcakes, then dust with cocoa. Chill until ready to serve.
- Yield: 24 cupcakes.