Booming business at Dozen Cupcakes plus white chocolate/peppermint recipe

From the Observer-Reporter comes an article about Pittsburgh's Dozen Cupcakes, reporting that they're selling 3,500 to 4,000 cupcakes per week and may open a second location. Also check out our interview with James Gray.

From the article:

All the bakers at Dozen are encouraged to come up with cupcake creations, Gray said. New flavors are typically introduced on Mystery Flavor Fridays. Among the more uncommon choices were spicy chocolate for Valentine's Day, which featured a chocolate ganache rolled in a spicy sugar, and Margarita, a royal icing containing tequila with the edges rolled in sugar and salt. Beer lovers might enjoy Saturday's feature, East End Chocolate Stout, made with, you guessed it--beer-- from East End Brewery.

They've also included the following recipe, which I'm reprinting:

White Chocolate Cupcakes with Peppermint Buttercream

• Ingredients

6 ounces white chocolate

41/2 large egg whites

1/4 cup milk, plus 3/4 cup

11/2 teaspoons vanilla

3 cups cake flour

1 cup sugar, plus 3 tablespoons

1 tablespoon baking powder, plus 11/2 teaspoons

3/4 teaspoon salt

9 tablespoons unsalted sweet cream butter, melted (cooled)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt chocolate in microwave, about 1 minute. Don’t overcook.

Combine egg whites, 1/4 cup milk and vanilla. In a separate bowl combine the dry ingredients and mix on low speed. Add the butter and remaining milk. Mix on low speed until dry ingredients are moistened and then increase speed to medium and beat for about 11/2 minutes.

Scrape bowl well and gradually add egg mixture in three batches, mixing about 30 seconds after each step to incorporate completely. Add the melted chocolate and beat on medium until nice and smooth.

Fill cupcake papers two-thirds full and back until lightly golden on top, about 15 to 18 minutes.

Peppermint Buttercream

• Ingredients

1 pound sweet cream butter

8 cups confectioner’s sugar

1/8 teaspoon peppermint extract


Mix butter until smooth. Add confectioner’s sugar in small batches, mixing well after each batch. I add about 1 tablespoon milk after each installment to keep the buttercream smooth. Add a good peppermint extract.

Once all confectioner’s sugar is added, mix on high speed for about 3 to 4 minutes, or until the buttercream is light and its color is bright white.

Garnish cupcakes with a peppermint stick or crushed peppermint or a peppermint leaf.

James Gray, Dozen cupcakes