I decided that I would start simple and the Brownie Cupcakes seemed like they were in my league. Here's the recipe:
6 oz good quality bittersweet chocolate (60% to 70% cacao), chopped (I used Ghiradelli)
6 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tbsp light corn syrup
Pinch of salt
3/4 c. sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
(I omitted the walnuts, but if you like them, use 2/3 c. coarsely chopped)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Recipe makes 8 cupcakes. Stir the chocolate and butter in a small heavy saucepan over low heat until they melt and the mixture is smooth. Stir in the syrup and salt. Remove from the heat and set aside. Using an electric mixer, beat the sugar and eggs in a large bowl for 2 minutes or until the mixture is thick and light. Stir in the chocolate mixture. Add the flour and baking powder, and stir just until blended; then stir in the walnuts. Divide the batter equally among cupcake liners, filling them completely. Bake for about 25 minutes. Remove the cupcakes from the tin and let them cool completely on a wire rack.
4 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
1/3 c. light corn syrup
4 oz good quality bittersweet chocolate (same as above)
8 small fresh strawberries
Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese in a large bowl until it is light and smooth. Beat in the syrup. Melt the chocolate slowly and then add to the cream cheese mixture and beat until blended and fluffy, stopping the machine and scraping the bottom of the bowl to ensure that the mixture is well blended. Spread the frosting generously over the cooled cupcakes. Garnish each one with a fresh strawberry, and serve.
Granted, my guinea pig for taste testing was Sean (who is a bit biased), but I'd give these 4.5 stars! The brownie stuck to the paper a bit, but I might have undercooked them, because I like them to be a bit more "fudgie" than cake-like.