(VEGAN) Tax season is finally over, so let’s celebrate! Treat yourself to a delicious vegan, soy-free, nut-free fudge, mint and raspberry cupcake. Sound like a mouthful? Well, you will be on cloud nine when you get a mouthful of this vegan delight. C’mon! You know you deserve it! — Global Animal

Vegan, Soy-Free, Nut-Free Fudge, Mint and Raspberry Cupcakes
Yields: 12 cupcakes

A delicious vegan, soy-free, nut-free fudge mint and raspberry cupcake. Photo Credit: Food Network
A delicious vegan, soy-free, nut-free fudge, mint and raspberry cupcake. Photo Credit: Food Network

1 cup coconut milk
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 cup gluten-free all-purpose baking flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon double-acting baking powder
1/4 teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Mint Frosting:
1/2 cup vegan butter
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons coconut milk
2 teaspoons mint extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
1/4 teaspoon salt

Raspberry Compote:
1 cup fresh red raspberries
1 tablespoon sugar

Chocolate Ganache:
1 cup vegan chocolate chips

Chocolate Cookie Crumbles:
1 cup gluten-free vegan chocolate cookies

For the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a traditional cupcake pan with 12 cupcake liners.

Combine the coconut milk and vinegar and set aside. In a separate bowl, sift together the baking flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, xanthan gum and salt. In a large bowl, combine the sugar, oil and vanilla extract with the milk and vinegar mixture and beat with an electric mixer for 1 minute. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Fill the cupcake liners three-quarters full with batter and bake until the tops spring back when touched, about 22 minutes. Cool the cupcakes completely. Once cool, remove the cupcakes from the liners and cut horizontally in half creating 2 pieces.

For the frosting: Whip the butter until it is white and creamy, about 3 minutes. Add the confectioners’ sugar 1 cup at a time until thoroughly combined. Add the coconut milk, mint extract, vanilla bean paste and salt, and mix until smooth. Put the frosting in a piping bag and cut 1/2-inch off the tip.

For the compote: Combine the raspberries and sugar in a small skillet and cook over low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and let cool.

For the ganache: In a small saucepan, melt the chocolate chips over low heat, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat and let cool until it is still warm and easy to spread.

For the cookie crumbles: Using a food processor, crush the cookies into crumbles.

To assemble: Lift the top off of a cupcake and generously frost the bottom with mint frosting. Drizzle with raspberry compote and replace the top. Spread approximately 1 1/2 tablespoons chocolate ganache on the top, and then sprinkle with chocolate cookie crumbles.

Recipe Courtesy: Thais da Silva, Cupcake Wars, 2011

More Food Network: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/vegan-soy-free-nut-free-fudge-mint-and-raspberry-cupcakes-recipe/index.html