...the best little sister i could ask for...happy (early) birthday, baby. :)
slightly adapted from smitten kitchen
yields 1 dozen regular cupcakes
for the filling:
8 ounces cream cheese (low fat is ok), room temp
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg, room temp
2 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
for the cake:
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
5 tablespoons natural unsweetened cocoa powder (not dutch processed)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup coffee (or water if you'd prefer. coffee intensifies the chocolate taste.)
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
a handful of mini-chocolate chips to sprinkle on top just before baking, optional
1. For filling, beat together cream cheese, granulated sugar, and egg, beating until smooth. Stir in chopped chocolate and set aside.
2. Preheat oven to 350F and butter a 12-cup muffin tin or line with paper cups.
3. In medium bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt until combined, then whisk in the brown sugar, pressing out the lumps as best you can.
4. In separate small bowl, mix together coffee/water, oil, vinegar, and vanilla.
5. Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients and pour wet ingredients in, stirring until just incorporated. It's important not to stir too much here. Just until you see no more dry.
6. Pour batter into muffin cups to about 3/4 full, then spoon or pipe filling into center of each until the cups are almost full. (I put my filling in a quart-sized ziplock, then snipped the end off and made a make-shift piping bag. This helps to get the filling best centered.)