Step 1 Preheat oven to 160°C. Line 12 x 1/3-cup muffin-pan cups with 25cm squares of baking paper or paper cases.
Step 2 Add 2 teaspoons of the instant coffee to a small saucepan with skim milk. Set pan over medium heat. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute, or until coffee dissolves; leave to cool. Combine remaining instant coffee with ¼ cup boiling water in a small jug; leave to cool.
Step 3 Put table spread, vanilla extract and brown sugar in a small bowl. Beat with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add eggs to bowl, one at a time, beating between additions. (Mixture will separate.)
Step 4 Transfer egg mixture to a large bowl. Stir in half of the flour; stir in half of the coffee-infused milk. Repeat with remaining flour and coffee milk until batter combines. Divide batter among muffin-pan cups; bake for 15 minutes. Leave cooked cupcakes to stand in muffin pan for 2 minutes.
Step 5 Make 6 small holes in the top of each cupcake with a wooden skewer. Spoon cool instant black coffee over cupcakes, reserving 1 tablespoon, then transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Step 6 Put extra skim milk and extra brown sugar in a food processor with caster sugar and ricotta; blend until smooth. Spoon or pipe ricotta mixture onto tops of cupcakes; drizzle with reserved black coffee. Dust cupcakes with cocoa powder and serve.