MEM has been asking begging me to make either homemade ice cream or cupcakes, after their favorite Mitchell ice cream flavor, Grasshopper.  What is Grasshopper?  Minty ice cream with crushed cookies, and chocolate swirls.  I admit, it is pretty rocking.

I love  the Scharffen Berger chocolate baking contest as it really pushes me out of my comfort zone;  to try adding new and exciting ingredients to my otherwise, not boring but basic chocolate recipes.  Last year I made a chili powder scented flourless cake;  we didn’t win but the cake was delicious.  This year some of the exotic ingredients to chose from are:  stout beer, buttermilk, coconut butter, saffron, fresh beet, bee pollen, condensed milk and the list goes on and on.  I went with, coconut butter, buttermilk, and condensed milk. Normally Grasshopper ice cream is a deep green but keeping with the chocolate theme, I opted for a deep dark chocolate cupcake using Scharffen Berger’s unsweetened cocoa powder and strived for not only flavor but moisture and texture;  I wanted this cupcake to be dense, moist and flavorful.  I made a batter using the coconut butter, chocolate powder and buttermilk and I added crushed Oreo cookies and peppermint oil instead of vanilla extract for the extra flavor.  The oil is intense and you only need a small amount to make an impact on the flavor.  My frosting was made with more chocolate, sugar, creamy butter and condensed milk.  I was afraid the milk may make the end result too sweet, instead it was rich and creamy. This was the ultimate “grasshopper” cupcake and it got a 6 thumbs up from MEM!  

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