Cacti Cupcakes

I’m going to be totally upfront and admit that I’m not 100% sure I nailed these… I think by looking at them it’s pretty clear that my playdough skills are a little rusty!  Oh well!  The recipe works in theory, but definitely required a little more patience to get the icing right!  They look better from far away!  But, here they are anyway – Cacti Cupcakes! 🙂

Cacti Cupcakes

Ingredients

For the cakes:

  • 175g soft butter/marg
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 225g self raising flour
  • 120ml milk

For the topping:

  • Green Packet Icing
  • Purple Food colouring
  • Crushed light biscuits (I used malted milks)
  • Buttercream
  1. Set the oven to 180° and line a cupcake/muffin tin with twelve cases.
  2. Cream together the butter and sugar and then whisk in the eggs.
  3. Gradually stir in the flour and milk, alternating between the two.
  4. Pour into the cupcake cases and bake for about 15 minutes or until golden brown.
  5. Once the cupcakes are cooled, spread the tops with a layer of buttercream and then sprinkle with crushed biscuits to create a sand effect.  
  6. Give the green icing a more succulent appropriate shade by adding a little purple food colouring, then carefully (unlike me!) mould into leaf and cactus shapes.  This is the most fiddly bit and requires some time and patience to get right.  It might be worth using flower or star-shaped cutouts to get the right shape.

Marshmallow Teacake Cupcakes

Happy Friday!  How was your Easter weekend?  Did you get your fill of chocolate, or – like me – were you raiding the supermarket on Tuesday morning for half-price Easter eggs?  I found bags of Galaxy Caramel Eggs for 50p and used my arm to sweep the whole shelf into my basket.  No shame.

Anyway, hopefully you’re not too sick of chocolate (is that even possible?) – clearly I’m not, because yesterday I got a craving for cupcakes and decided to make these bad boys.  The American baking community call them Hi-Hats (marshmallow frosting dipped in melted chocolate), but to us Brits really they’re just cupcakes with a marshmallow tea cake (/poo emoji) perched on top.  I went one better and added a raspberry jam filling – just like real tea cakes.  I thought they were going to be a nightmare to make, but with a bit of strategic freezer-time, they were actually pretty easy 🙂

Marshmallow Teacake Cupcakes

Ingredients

  • 175g butter
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 2 eggs whisked
  • 225g self raising flour
  • 120ml milk
  • Raspberry Jam
  • For the marshmallow cream topping: 1 jar of Marshmallow Fluff (amazing stuff), 250g butter, 300g icing sugar
  • 250g plain chocolate
  1. Set the oven to 180. In a bowl, cream together the butter and caster sugar, then stir in the egg.
  2. Stir in the flour and milk gradually, alternating between the two until you have a light and fluffy batter.
  3. Spoon into deep cupcake cases and then bake for around 20 minutes (or until an inserted skewer comes out clean).  Allow to cool.
  4. In a clean bowl, mix together the butter, icing sugar and marshmallow fluff to create a marshmallow buttercream.  Using a piping bag, pipe a ringed “fence” on the top of the cupcake, then fill the centre with jam.  Pipe around and on top of the jam to create a peak, then place the cupcakes in the freezer to ensure the topping is set and cold enough to keep its shape when you dip it in the melted chocolate.
  5. Melt the chocolate in the microwave (or on the hob, whichever way you prefer!), then carefully dip the cupcakes – topside down – into it.  Tip: It helps if you use a cup for the chocolate rather than a bowl.  Leave the cupcakes to cool in the fridge so the chocolate can set.
  6. SCOFF.

Have a great weekend everyone! 🙂

Cupcakes at The Deck

My sister in-law passed her PhD and turned 25 last weekend (…she’s a total wonderkid, what can I say?).  So to celebrate both she came to stay for the weekend and I took her to The Deck in Cardiff Bay to scoff cupcakes and drink tea.  I’d heard great things about their cupcakes, but nothing prepared me for the glass case of gluttony we were faced with when we arrived (As soon as I saw a cupcake towering with buttercream and crowned with a pink French Fancy I knew we were onto a winner). While we queued up and struggled to choose one each, the lady in front of us was busy filling a box full of them to take away 🙂