Beer and Sauerkraut Fudge Cupcakes
with Chocolate Beer Frosting
Islander was the matron of honor at her friend Lisa L.’s wedding in Germany a few years ago. She appreciated how Lisa observed several cultural customs, such as polterabend (plate smashing), baumstamm sägen (log sawing) and “bride kidnapping”. It was fun and memorable to experience a traditional German wedding!
Oktoberfest was originally a royal wedding celebration in Bavaria, Germany, for Crown Prince Ludwig (later King Ludwig I) who married Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen in 1810. The citizens partied for several days in their honor and the anniversary has evolved into the world-famous festival, making Munich a popular drinking destination. German immigrants brought their beer and culture to America. Now several communities and groups around the country host Oktoberfests.
For a Deutschland-inspired dessert to share at German ethnic events, we made unusual cupcakes called Schokoladenkleine kuchen mit Bier und Sauerkraut. They are surprisingly sweet, moist and fudgy, with a slightly crisp texture from the sour cabbage. And the chocolate beer frosting is delicious and a creamy complement to the cupcakes.
Observe Oktoberfest by baking beer and sauerkraut fudge cupcakes with chocolate beer frosting. Prosit!
(Adapted from Food Network)
For the cupcakes
- 10 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1 ½ cups sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 ¼ cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup dark beer
- 2/3 cup sauerkraut
- 1 cup raisins (optional)
In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter with the sugar. Stir in the vanilla. Beat in the eggs.
In a separate bowl, combine the cocoa powder, flour, baking powder and baking soda. Gradually add this mixture, alternating with the beer, to the butter mixture. Blend until smooth. Drain the liquid from the sauerkraut. Fold the sauerkraut into the chocolate batter. Stir in the raisins.
Scoop the batter 2/3 full into cupcake paper liners. Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 35 minutes. Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Yield: Approximately 2 ½ dozen cupcakes.
For the frosting
- ½ cup (1 stick) butter, softened
- pinch of salt
- 5 tablespoons (1/3 cup) unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3-4 cups powdered sugar, divided use
- 1/3 cup dark beer
In a mixing bowl, cream the butter with the salt. Add one cup of powdered sugar and the cocoa powder and blend until smooth. Pour in a little beer, alternating with the remaining powdered sugar.
Blend until the frosting is smooth and the desired spreadable consistency is reached. Frost the cupcakes. Decorate with mini Oktoberfest flags (optional).
- Oktoberfest actually starts in late-September and lasts 16 days, ending around the first weekend of October. Learn more about the original Oktoberfest in Munich, Bavaria, Germany, by visiting the official website.
- For a less “stringy” sauerkraut texture in the cupcakes, finely cut up the cabbage before mixing into the batter.
- For more German recipes, see our previous posts for apfel strudel, Black Forest cake, German-style potato salad, stollen (fruitcake) and wienerschnitzel. Search our blog for additional dishes from Deutschland.