Browned Butter Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream

Browned Butter Cupcakes
This is a dense cake with a delicately sweet taste. They're perfect for a crowd. Makes 2 dozen.

1 c (237 g) butter
2 1/2 c (355 g) flour
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 c (397 g) sugar
4 eggs, room temp
1 c (237 ml) milk, warmed in the microwave for 20 seconds
1 tsp vanilla

Place the two sticks of butter in a pan with tall sides and melt over medium heat. Continue cooking, stirring constantly, until foaming lessens and dark brown flecks form in the bottom of the ban. Continue cooking and stirring until the butter itself has taken on a nice brown hue and smells nutty. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temp. This should result in 3/4 c (177 ml) of browned butter.

Preheat oven to 350F and prepare 2 cupcake tins with liners. Set aside.

Combine the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.

In a large bowl, beat sugar and eggs until thickened, about a minute. Add milk, browned butter, and vanilla, stirring just until combined.

Add half of the dry mixture and beat until just combined. Repeat with the second half.

Divide batter amongst liners and bake for 18-22 minutes, until tops are springy to the touch or a toothpick poked into the center comes out clean.

Cool tins on a rack for 2-3 minutes before carefully removing the cakes. Allow to cool completely before frosting.

Chocolate Buttercream
This frosting is awesome because it's quick to make and it's not too sweet. Definitely a new favorite! Just as a note - it dries to an almost fudge-like texture.

5 oz (142 g) good quality semisweet or bittersweet chocolate (I used Scharffen Berger bittersweet)
1/2 c (118 g) butter, room temp
3 c (468 g) powdered sugar
2 Tbls baking cocoa
4-8 Tbls milk

Melt chocolate in a double boiler and allow to cool to room temperature. Beat in the butter until creamy, about a minute. Sift in half of the powdered sugar and all of the baking cocoa, then beat until thickened and mostly combined, adding 2 Tbls of milk to loosen. Add remaining sugar and beat until combined, adding up to 6 Tbls more of milk until desired frosting consistency is reached.
Slowly beat in milk 1TBS at a time until you reach desired consistency.