- 250ml milk stout
- 250g butter
- 75 g cocoa powder
- 400g caster sugar
- 185g crème fraiche
- 2 free-range eggs
- 275g flour
- 2t bicarbonate of soda
- 50g hazelnuts, blended until fine
- 400g dark chocolate, broken into blocks
- 250ml cream
- 100g salted pretzels, crushed
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Add the beer to a large saucepan over a medium heat and bring to a simmer, add the butter a small knob at a time and whisk to combine until melted completely. Turn the heat down to low and whisk in the cocoa powder and sugar. Continue to whisk and stir until the sugar has dissolved, then remove from heat. Mix the crème fraiche and free-range eggs together until combined before stirring into the beer mix and then whisking in the flour, bicarb and hazelnuts. Spoon the mixture into the a muffin tin lined with paper cases and bake for 25–30 minutes until springy to the touch and a cake tester comes out clean. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool completely.
For the ganache, melt 300g of the chocolate in a glass bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Ensure the glass bowl does not touch the water to prevent burning the chocolate. Remove the bowl from the heat once the chocolate has melted and stir in the cream a little at a time until the ganache become thick, glossy and silky. Spread the ganache over the cupcakes.
To make the salted pretzel shards, melt the remaining 100g of chocolate, spread on a sheet of baking paper and sprinkle the crushed salted pretzels over it, place in fridge until set. Break the sheet into shards and arrange them on top of cupcakes before serving.