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Belly Coca-Cola Cupcakes

24 cupcakes

Belly is the name of a charming little general store that serves great food. It is located in the VA/Highlands neighborhood in Atlanta.

Anyone of a certain age knows that the best way to drink Coke is out of an ice-cold, glass contour bottle with a few Planters peanuts dropped inside. Belly storekeeper Melanie Manning kept this in mind when she developed the store's recipe.

2 cups self-rising flour
2 cups granulated sugar
3 tablespoons cocoa
1 cup Coca-Cola
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups miniature marshmallows
2 eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl, combine flour and sugar; set aside.

In a saucepan, combine the cocoa, Coca-Cola, butter and marshmallows. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Pour the boiled mixture over the flour mixture and stir to combine. In a small bowl, beat the eggs, then stir in the buttermilk and vanilla. Stir into the flour mixture; stir well to combine. Pour the batter into cupcake pans lined with foil or paper cups, filling each 2/3 full. Bake 15 to 20 minutes, until a tester inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool cupcakes completely before frosting.

Per cupcake (with frosting): 342 calories (percent of calories from fat, 49), 4 grams protein, 41 grams carbohydrates, 2 grams fiber, 19 grams fat (10 grams saturated), 54 milligrams cholesterol, 211 milligrams sodium

Whipped Fudge and Coke Frosting

This fluffy frosting tastes like chocolate mousse with something extra. You can use any combination of chocolate chips, as long as you have a total of 1 2/3 cups.

Tester's note: Keep a close eye on the frosting as you beat it. One trick is to use the electric beaters until the mixture begins to lighten in color and texture, and then finish beating it by hand to the right consistency. If the frosting becomes too stiff to spread, use a spatula that's been held under hot water and dried off to frost the cupcakes.

1 cup heavy cream
6 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/4 cup Coca-Cola
1 cup milk chocolate chips
2/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup coarsely chopped Planters peanuts

In a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the cream, corn syrup and Coca-Cola and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat and add the chocolate chips and butter, stirring until melted and smooth (if the chocolate doesn't melt completely, return the saucepan to low heat and stir constantly until melted). Pour the mixture into a mixing bowl and chill for 1 hour.

Using an electric beater, preferably with a whisk attachment, beat the mixture until it is light and fluffy but still spreadable. Do not over-beat, or the frosting will become too stiff to spread. Use immediately to frost the cooled cupcakes, and then sprinkle them with the chopped peanuts.



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