1) Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C/Gas mark 4. Line 2 regular size cupcake tins with liners.
2) In a large bowl using an electric mixer on low speed, combine the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, and salt. Add the eggs, half-and-half, oil, and vanilla and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Stir in the warmed cherry cola until fully combined.
3) Fill the cupcake liners three-quarters full with batter and bake until the cupcakes spring back when touched with your finger, 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool in the pans for a few minutes, and then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
For the red licorice filling:
Tear the licorice into 2 1/2 cm pieces and place in a saucepan with the water over medium heat until it comes to a boil. Remove from the heat and let cool. Whisk in the sugar, cornstarch, salt, and egg yolks. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until thick and bubbly. Continue to cook for 1 minute, and then remove from heat. Cool to room temperature.
For the marshmallow icing:
Place the egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar in a heat-safe bowl over a saucepan with boiling water. Whisk constantly over the heat for 1 to 3 minutes. Once the sugar has dissolved, remove from the heat and beat with an electric mixer on high until stiff peaks have formed, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the vanilla extract.
For the cherry cola glaze:
Add the cherry cola, 1 tsp. at a time, to the icing sugar until it has a good consistency to drizzle on cupcakes.
Fill each of the cupcakes with red licorice filling. Sprinkle the crushed yoghurt covered pretzels on top. Top with marshmallow icing and drizzle with cherry cola glaze.
This recipe was provided by professional chefs and has been scaled down from a bulk recipe provided by a restaurant. The Food Network Kitchens chefs have not tested this recipe, in the proportions indicated, and therefore, we cannot make any representation as to the results.