Ours is 72-inches long made from a soft wood. So soft it holds every scribble, a practice session of the letter “E”, and a splinter of red paint. It keeps records of our dinners, weekend breakfasts, and the occasional overly stuffed gathering by way of smeared avocados, petrified pasta noodles, and a never ending supply of crumbs. In a wild game of tag, it’s our home base. The dinner table, that is.
This post is sponsored by Driscoll’s and The FeedFeed. Here’s the secret to why Driscoll’s berries are always so flavorful. They follow the sun. So when nothing is growing out of the frozen Minnesota earth this time of year, my Driscoll’s organic blackberries are still juicy and flavorful. To learn more about Driscoll’s #BerryTogether campaign, head this way. Thank you for supporting the companies that support me.
This table. It also holds family who eat meat and friends that don’t—vegans, vegetarians, and meat lovers; gluten intolerant, paleo preferred, and picky 5-year-olds, too. I’m grateful for this table, despite the nights that end in alligator tears from my tiny human. It’s taught me new recipes, hospitality, inclusion, and how to make really good Flourless Chocolate Cupcakes.
Flour-lovers, this one is for you too. This simple cake finds its lift from whipped egg whites, its fudgy richness from from butter, chocolate, and egg yolks, and its sweetness from an extra hit of salt (it compliments the sweetness).
It’s fine on its own, sprinkled with powdered sugar, but I made an afternoon of it, topping it with the sturdy mascarpone whipped cream frosting from my book, a drizzle of reduced blackberry sauce, and sugared sage, which, if you squint hard enough, look like festive, snowy trees.
I hope your table is rich this season, if for no other reason than these cupcakes. PS—if you find yourself with extra blackberry sauce, add to plain yogurt, top waffles and pancakes, or make another batch of these. To make, search for Driscoll’s Organic Blackberries. They follow the sun to grow juicy berries all year long.
Flourless Chocolate Cupcakes
Rich, naturally gluten-free Flourless Chocolate Cupcakes that will make even the flour-lover happy. Serve as is or top with a whipped mascarpone frosting, a drizzle of blackberry sauce, and sugared sage leaves.
- 8 tbsp. (1 stick) unsalted butter, diced
- 1 c. chopped bittersweet chocolate
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 6 large eggs, separated
- 1/2 c. sugar
- 6 oz. Driscoll's Organic Blackberries
- 2 tbsp. pure cane sugar
- 1 tbsp. water
- Mascarpone Frosting in The Minimalist Kitchen (pg. 254), omitting the cardamom
- 12 Sugared Sage Leaves (see notes for recipe)
- 12 blackberries
Make the flourless cake. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line cupcake tin with 12 liners. Set aside.
In a double boiler, add chocolate and butter. Place over a saucepan filled with water so that water is not touching bottom of double boiler. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring until chocolate and butter have almost melted. Remove from heat and whisk in the kosher salt until smooth. Set aside.
Meanwhile, separate egg whites and yolks into two bowls, placing the whites in a mixing bowl. Using a stand or hand mixer, whip egg whites on high until soft peaks. Then slowly add sugar a little bit at a time, whipping until almost stiff, glossy peaks form. Set aside.
Whisk the egg yolks into the cooled chocolate mixture until evenly combined (cooled to the point that it won't cook the yolks). Using a spatula, fold egg whites into the chocolate mixture in 4 increments until just combined. Divide batter evenly into the cupcake liners. Bake for about 20 minutes. Tops will spring back when ready. Remove from the oven. Slight collapsing is normal.
While the cupcakes bake, make the blackberry sauce. Into a small saucepan, add all the blackberry ingredients. Cook on medium heat until sugar is dissolved, about 5 minutes. Pour mixture into a high powered blender, blending until smooth. Pour sauce back into the saucepan through a fine mesh sieve to catch the seeds. Cook for another 5 minutes until sauce begins to reduce and thicken. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely. Store leftovers covered in the fridge.
Make the frosting. (If you don't have my book, here's a similar frosting recipe.)
To assemble, add a dollop of frosting to each cupcake, and pull a spoon in a circular motion through the center to create a divot. Spoon a bit of blackberry sauce over the middle. Top with an additional blackberry and a sugared sage leaf, if desired. Best served same day.
To make the sugared sage leaves, add 1/4 cup sugar and 2 tablespoons of water to your smallest saucepan. Heat to a simmer until sugar has dissolved, then heat about 2 minutes more to thicken. Allow mixture to cool before dipping sage leaves in the sugar syrup. Let excess drip off before coating with fine sugar (not powdered sugar or coarse sugar). Place on a cooling rack to harden, about 1 hour.