Recipe: D.I.Y. Whipped Chocolate Frosting

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Whipped chocolate icing from a can is a delicious basic - smooth and glossy and spread thick on yellow cake or homemade graham crackers. Who doesn't love chocolate frosting?

But chocolate frosting from those Betty Crocker or Duncan Hines cans is loaded with preservatives and strange fats and chemicals, and for all their convenience they really can't compare to homemade chocolate frosting. This recipe does involve a little cooking, but it's still a snap, and it gives a rich, decadent fudge frosting that holds teeth marks when you bite into it. Good for cakes, cupcakes, or swiping straight from the bowl.

Whipped Chocolate Frosting
ices 2 round layers or 24 cupcakes

1/2 cup unsalted butter
5 tablespoons cocoa powder (regular or Hershey's Special Dark)
1/2 cup milk
16 ounces (1 box) powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

Melt the butter over low heat in a medium saucepan, and whisk in the cocoa powder. Whisk in the milk and heat just until bubbles appear around the edges. Pour over the powdered sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer and whip until smooth and glossy. If it seems extremely runny, add more powdered sugar. Be careful, though; as it cools it will firm up considerably, so wait until the icing cools before adding too much more. Beat in the vanilla.

Use immediately, or let in cool in the fridge, then whip again until fluffy. This will keep for several days the fridge, but make sure it's tightly covered. It will dry out and form a thin crust when exposed to air.

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