"Hostess" Filled Cupcakes
CATEGORY: Desserts- Cake
These cupcakes look like the Hostess Cupcakes we grew up with....But that's where the similarity ends- these are so much better!!  The week after we made these cupcakes, we decided to frost a batch of brownies with this frosting; it was that good!
PREP TIME: 60 minutes

2 cups white sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour 
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking soda 
2 eggs- beaten
1 cup milk
1 cup water
1 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
24 paper cupcake liners

1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup shortening
2 cups powdered sugar
1 pinch salt
3 tablespoons milk
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup half and half
4 teaspoons instant coffee powder
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
4 teaspoons ground cinnamon


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F 
Line 36 muffin cups with paper liners.
In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda and 1 teaspoon salt. Gradually add in the beaten eggs, 1 cup milk, water, oil and 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Mix well.
Fill each muffin cup only half-full of batter.
Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cupcake comes out clean. Allow to cool.
Make filling: In a large bowl, beat butter and shortening together until smooth. Blend in powdered sugar and pinch of salt. Gradually beat in 3 tablespoons milk and 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla until light and fluffy. Fill a pastry bag with a medium tip. Push tip through bottom of paper liner to fill each cupcake.
Combine butter, 3/4 cup sugar, half and half and coffee powder in large saucepan.
Stir over medium heat until sugar and coffee powder dissolve and mixture simmers. Remove from heat.
Add both chocolates; whisk until smooth. Whisk in vanilla.
Pour chocolate mixture into large bowl.
Sift in powdered sugar and cinnamon; whisk to blend.
Press plastic onto surface of frosting. Cool until firm enough to spread, stirring occasionally, about 1 1/2 hours.

To create white icing "squiggle"- combine powdered sugar and just enough water so that icing can be piped out of pastry bag using small tip.