Today is my youngest sister's birthday. Happy birthday, Jenny! Since I can't be there in person to celebrate with her, I've decided to send her blog birthday wishes by dedicating this blog to her. I made these Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla cupcakes with Valrhona Chocolate Buttercream in her honor. I wanted to make these simple cupcakes with the most decadent ingredients I could find… I did and they turned out simply sinful. I'm a huge chocolate fan, but definitely appreciate the flavor contrast between the vanilla cake and chocolate frosting. Chocolatey without being over-the-top sweet or worse, cloyingly sweet. There's nothing worse than a sickeningly sweet buttercream. You know the kind where you instantly feel like you have a new cavity with each bite you take? I used Amy Sedaris' basic vanilla cupcake recipe, but supplemented the vanilla extract with fresh vanilla bean. For the frosting I used one stick of butter, 2 cups of confectioners' sugar, three teaspoons of Valrhona chocolate powder, vanilla extract and soy milk to thin it out. I whipped the heck out of it in my Kitchen-aid to give it an airy, mousse-like consistency. Yum. Happy birthday cupcakes make my tummy really happy. Too happy, even. Jenny, can't wait to see you in person, then your tummy can be happy too.