Getting Ready for St. Pat's

My husband brought home a six pack of Guinness for the upcoming weekend.  You know what I'm talking about.  You have to wear green or you'll get pinched, little leprechauns show up everywhere, and there's Guinness in everyone's fridge.  I have personally never been able to drink stout beers, but I know that Guinness is used in plenty of recipes I have seen, so I thought maybe I would try one out so I wouldn't be left out of all the Guinness consumption across the country.  I love cupcakes, and so do all my husbands co workers, so I decided to make a Guinness cupcake with a classic buttercream icing.  They came out amazing!!  The Guinness gave the cupcakes a malty richness and kept them super moist during the baking.  I may have to make a few more batches before St. Pat's because I don't think the ones I made are going to last long.

1 bottle Guinness
1/2 c. whole milk
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1 tbsp. vanilla extract
3 large eggs
6 oz. Greek Vanilla flavored yogurt
3/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder (Ghirardelli's is my favorite to use)
2 c. sugar
2 1/2 c. unbleached flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the Guinness, milk, vegetable oil, and vanilla. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Mix in the yogurt.
3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the cocoa, sugar, flour, and baking soda. Gradually mix the dry ingredients into the wet Guinness mixture.
4. Place baking cups in 24 muffin pans
5. Bake 25 minutes, until risen and set in the middle but still soft and tender. Cool before turning out of the tins.
Vanilla Bean Buttercream
    1 stick salted butter – room temperature
1 stick unsalted butter – room temperature
1/2 cup shortening
1 tablespoon Vanilla extract
1 1/2 pounds confectioner’s sugar 
 4 tablespoons cold whole milk

Cream the butter and shortening in the bowl of an electric or stand mixer. Add the clear vanilla extract and combine well. Begin adding in the sugar and mixing thoroughly after each addition. After all of the sugar has been added and mixed thoroughly, begin adding the very cold milk… one tablespoon at a time, combining very well after each addition (mixer on medium-high to high speed) until you reach the desired consistency.

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