Leftover ganache frosting? Don’t toss it! Serve the luscious spread with pretzel sticks, berries, or banana slices for a decadent snack.
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Chop the chocolate. In a medium microwave-safe bowl, combine the butter and chopped chocolate and microwave in 30-sec. increments until chocolate and butter have melted, stirring in between.
2. In a large bowl, combine melted chocolate mixture with the brown sugar, eggs, and 2 tsp vanilla extract. Whisk until smooth.
3. Sift in the cocoa powder and salt and mix until combined. Line a cupcake pan with paper liners and divide batter among cups. Bake 12-14 min., until tops have just set. Cool completely on wire rack before frosting.
4. Meanwhile, place chocolate chips in a heatproof bowl. In a small saucepan, heat cream on medium-high until just steaming. Pour hot cream over chips and let stand 10 min. (be sure cream is covering chips). Add remaining vanilla and stir until smooth. Place bowl in the refrigerator to cool and thicken. In a stand mixer or with a hand mixer, whip chocolate until stiff peaks form and ganache is fluffy and lighter in color.
5. Place ganache in a piping bag fit with a star tip and frost the cupcakes. Decorate tops with candy hearts.
Don’t have a piping bag? Add ganache to a sealed plastic bag and snip off one corner.