1. New flowers for the balcony
2. Lime, cardamom and pistachio cupcakes
3. Homemade chocolate birthday cake
4. Amazing sunrise!
5. Lovely weather and a bright blue sea
6. Trying out some metallic polishes
7. Sculpture on the beach at Stonehaven
8. Went to a fab cupcake cafe!
9. Holo glitter polish
A few weeks ago I made a batch of cardamom, lime and pistachio cupcakes. I used this recipe and they were really delicious and quite unique! The only change I made was to make lime buttercream for the topping which I did by mixing 250g of icing sugar into 75g unsalted butter and then grating in the zest of 1 lime. What do you think?
I wanted to show you some photos of a recent batch of cupcakes I made. These were just plain vanilla cakes but I experimented a bit with the icing and was really happy with the result.To get the pink and blue swirls, I just put alternate spoonfuls of pink and blue icing into the piping bag and then piped as usual onto the cakes. You can see that some worked better than others but this is definitely a technique I am going to try again!
These mocha cupcakes worked out so much better than the batch of Chocolate & Mint cupcakes I made a few weeks back! I used a cake recipe from my Great British Bake Off book and then experimented with the icing. The coffee flavour is very subtle so next time I make these I will probably add a bit more coffee.
175g butter or marg
175g caster sugar
3 eggs, lightly beaten
175g self raising flour
¼ teaspoon baking powder
1 ½ tablespoons instant coffee dissolved in 2 tablespoons water
50g dark chocolate, grated
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C and put your cases in the tin.
2. Beat the butter for a minute or so and then beat in the sugar until it becomes pale and fluffy. Beat in the eggs gradually.
3. Gently fold in the flour and baking powder and then the grated chcocolate.
4. Separate into the cake cases and put in the oven for around 20 minutes.
5. To make the icing, beat the butter until it is creamy and then gradually beat in the icing sugar, cocoa powder and coffee. I always use an electric whisk as it makes the icing really fluffy! Add tablespoons of milk until the icing is the right consistency for piping, or just swirl the icing onto the cakes using a knife.
I had some fresh mint leaves left over so decided to make some chocolate and mint cupcakes. I had a look though my books for a recipe but all of them said to use mint extract or chopped up mints (as in sweets not the herb). I went ahead and used the herbs anyway but it didn’t really work so I wouldn’t recommend it! The mint flavour in the cupcakes was a little strange and not very strong. I won’t post the recipe as I don’t think these were the best cupcakes I’ve ever made but there are lots of recipes out there for mint and chocolate cupcakes. Next time I make these I will definitely use mint extract rather than actual mint!!!
I’ve been super busy over Christmas and can’t believe it’s been a week since my last post! I hope you have all had a lovely Christmas! I haven’t had time to write anything new so here is a recipe I have been meaning to post for a while now….
115g caster sugar
85g self raising flour
25g cocoa powder
55g peanut butter
2 eggs, beaten
Vanilla Buttercream Ingredients
250g icing sugar
75g unsalted butter
1tsp vanilla extract
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C / 350°F / Gas Mark 4 and put 12 cupcake cases in a tray.
2. Cream the margarine, peanut butter and sugar in a mixing bowl until fluffy.
3. Gradually add the eggs to the mixture, beating after each addition.
4. Fold in the flour and cocoa powder gently.
5. Share out the mixture evenly into the cases and then bake for around 20 minutes.
6. To make the buttercream cream the butter and then gradually add the icing sugar. I usually use an electric whisk once most of the icing sugar is mixed it to mae the buttercream nice and fluffy. Add the vanilla extract at the end. For ages I’ve used the Nielsen Massey Vanilla Extract which tastes so much better than other vanilla extracts I’ve tried but here I used the Nielsen Massey Pure Vanilla Bean Paste which I love! It tastes pretty much the same as the vanilla extract but you can see little dots of vanilla in the buttercream which makes it a little different.
I also used my new Vanilla Bean Paste to make some Pecan Tarts from this recipe. They tasted really good even if they didn’t look perfect!