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Double Chocolate Whoopie Pies Recipe
The legend goes that Amish women used to make cream-filled chocolate cakes and pack them for their husbands in their lunch. When the husbands found the cakes, they would shout, “Whoopie!” and thus the whoopie pie came into existence (Maynard, Micheline (March 17, 2009). "Whoopie! Cookie, Pie or Cake, It's Having Its Moment". The New York Times).
Well, I don’t know about those husbands, but whoopie pies do indeed get me excited. King Arthur Flour has a recipe for a Mocha Whoopie Pie, which I adapted to a pretty straight-forward chocolate on chocolate whoopie pie (I am a woman with all the associated hormones and chocolate on chocolate seemed the way to go).
- ½ cup of butter, softened
- 1 cup (7 1/2 ounces) brown sugar
- 1 tbsp espresso powder*
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1 large egg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup baking cocoa or Dutch-process cocoa
- 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup milk
- 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips or chopped
- 1 cup heavy cream
- pinch of salt
*Espresso powder is optional. In small amounts, espresso powder simply enhances the flavor of chocolate (this is a great thing!) The amount called for above will not cause an intensely coffee-flavored cake, but it will be just barely perceptible. Add less or omit it entirely, if you wish. For a mocha variation, add 3 tbsp. total of espresso powder.
For the filling:
I start with the filling since it must be refrigerated for a couple of hours before the cakes can be filled with it.
- Heat the heavy cream to just below a simmer. Do not boil the cream. If it is boiled, it will curdle and you will not be able to use it.
- Pour the hot cream over the chopped chocolate or chocolate chips.
- Add a pinch of salt.
- Let rest for about a minute, then stir until smooth and combined.
- Refrigerate the mixture for a couple of hours until it is set, but not rock-hard.
For the cakes:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line as many baking sheets as you have with parchment or grease them lightly. It took 4 rounds of baking for me to get all the cakes done, so keep this in mind when making your time allowance.
- Cream together the butter and brown sugar.
- Add the espresso powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix to combine well.
- Add the egg and the vanilla extract. Beat thoroughly to combine and scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Stir in the cocoa powder.
- Alternately add the milk and flour, stirring between additions.
- You can make great big whoopie pies or smaller servings. Because this recipe is intensely chocolatey, I recommend the smaller sizes. Also, the larger the cake, the more likely it is to fall apart when you are assembling the whoopie pies. I decided on a tablespoon size dollop of batter for each cake half.
- Scoop the batter onto the parchment-lined or greased baking sheets. Be sure to allow enough room for spreading, at least 1 ½”.
- Bake the cakes for 10-12 minutes. It took mine the full 12 minutes and they were not very large, but ovens vary, so keep an eye on them. You want them to be done when you take them out. If they are underdone, they likely will fall apart when you try to assemble them.
- Allow cakes to cool about 10-15 minutes on the baking sheet, then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely, being careful not to break them as you transfer them. This was not difficult. They were pretty sturdy.
- After the cakes have cooled completely and the chocolate filling has been refrigerated until set, remove the filling from the refrigerator and beat it until it is fluffy.
- If you have something to pipe the filling with, it will make for a prettier presentation. I did not take the time to do this, but rather simply slathered the filling on half of the cakes and topped them, then ate them! Be sure to have a big ole’ glass of milk on standby, because like I said, they are decadently rich and chocolatey!
© 2013 Leah Wells-Marshburn