Last Wednesday we celebrated my 2 Year Portland Anniversary with dinner and drinks at Rogue. While we were there I picked up a bottle of their Voodoo Bacon Maple Ale; a collaboration with Portland’s famous Voodoo Doughnut! I decided I wanted to pay tribute to the city I’ve called home for the past two years by baking some delicious cupcakes using the beer. The result: The mixture of chocolate, maple frosting, and bacon make a trifecta of pure Portland deliciousness!
(makes 16-18 cupcakes)
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar (I substituted one cup of regular sugar for Stevia to make them a little healthier)
1 ½ tsp baking soda
¾ tsp salt
¾ cup light sour cream
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter
1 cup Rogue’s Voodoo Bacon Maple Ale*
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
*If you don’t have the leisure of visiting Rogue or Voodoo Doughnut in person to pick up a bottle, you can check with your grocery store or order online from Rogue!
1 eight oz package light cream cheese, softened
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 Tbs maple syrup (I like to use the sugar-free kind!)
½ tsp pure vanilla extract
2 cups powdered sugar
10 drops neon pink food coloring
Optional – and by optional I mean…DO IT because it really makes the cupcake!
4-6 strips of thick cut bacon
Cook bacon in a large skillet over low-medium heat. Sprinkle with brown sugar and cook thoroughly. There’s always a great debate about chewy or crispy bacon.. I say, to each their own, so cook it how you like! Cut each strip into thirds or fourths and set aside.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line a muffin tin with paper liners
(1.) In a medium sized bowl, whisk together flour sugar, baking soda, and salt. (2.) In a large bowl, use an electric mixer, and cream together sour cream and eggs until smooth. (3.) In a medium sauce pan, heat butter and beer over medium to high heat. (4.) Bring to a simmer and then whisk in cocoa powder until well mixed.
(5.) Remove from heat and add to sour cream and egg mixture. Stir until just combined. (6.) Slowly add flour mixture and stir until all ingredients are mixed. (7.) Fill muffin cups about ¾ of the way full with batter and place in the oven. Bake for 16-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. And what better toothpicks to use then these?!
(8.) Remove from the oven and let cool in the pan for 5 minutes. Remove from pan and place on cooling rack for an additional 10-15 minutes.
While you wait for your cupcakes to cool, start on the frosting!
In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to cream together cream cheese and butter until smooth.
Add maple syrup and vanilla extract and mix again. Slowly add powdered sugar until mixed. Add food coloring and mix until well blended.
Add to a large zip-lock bag with the corner tip cut off or a pastry bag and frost cupcakes.
Top with a chunk of bacon and serve!