Here are a few more pictures. I got carried away. [grin]
1 cups boiling water
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups jarred sour cherries (NOT maraschino cherries!), pitted, with juice
2 tablespoons corn starch
1 quart heavy cream
1 tablespoon whipped cream stabilizer
chocolate shavings, to garnish
3 tablespoons Kirschwasser
Preheat oven to 350F.
In medium bowl, pour boiling water over cocoa, and whisk until smooth. Let mixture cool. Sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt; set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at time, then stir in vanilla. Add the flour mixture alternately with the cocoa mixture, ending with the flour.
Fill the lined muffin cups three-quarters full, being careful not to overfill. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cupcake comes out clean, about 18 to 20 minutes. Cool the cupcakes in the pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the cherry filling: Reserve 12-14 of the nicest looking. These will be used for the garnish. Also, reserve 3 tablespoons of the cherry juice to mix with the corn starch while still cold, to make a slurry. Then, roughly chop the remaining cherries and add to a saucepan over low heat, with the juice. Bring to a low simmer. Add the corn starch slurry and, while stirring, let come back to a full boil to thicken. Immediately remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature. The filling should thicken somewhat.
In the meantime, whip the whipped cream with stabilizer until peaks form. Keep cool in the refrigerator. Shave chocolate for garnish.
To assemble: Insert a small knife at a 45 degree angle about 1/8 inch from the edge of each cupcake and cut all the way around, remove a cone of cake. Cut away all but the top 1/4 inch of the cone; leaving only a small disk of cake which will be used to top the cupcake. With a small spoon, pour in 1/2 teaspoon of kirschwasser into the hole. Fill each one with 2 tablespoons of the cherry filling and top with the disk. Frost liberally with whipped cream, garnish with a cherry and sprinkle with chocolate shaving.
Keep refrigerated until almost ready to serve. Best not to make on a very hot day as the whipped cream curdles easily.