Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The cupcakes have returned!!

Yep, it's that time of year again, RSPCA Cupcake Day is fast approaching and this will be my 4th year baking my lil heart out (hold on, don't I do that all the time anyway?!) for those cute lil critters! This year I am doing pretty much the same as last year, every donation of $10 or more receives a batch of cupcakes as thanks and there will be a Cupcake Morning Tea at my work on August 15th as well. I am very excited because it’s only Day 5 and I’ve already raised $85.

If you are interested in donating then you can do so via my fundraising page http://www.fundraise.rspcacupcakeday.com.au/emily_balmforth_4

This was the first batch to go out this year, some decadent Double Chocolate Cupcakes and some heavenly Sticky Date Cupcakes.

And here is how it's done :)

Sticky Date Cupcakes (This made 18 normal sized cupcakes)

You will need:

250g pitted dates
1 cup water
1 tspn bicarb
60g butter
2/3 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1.5 cups self raising flour

Pre-heat oven to 180C and line your cupcake pans.

Place the water and dates in a deep dish (believe me you will thank me for this later) in the microwave on medium high for around 4-5 mins. They should be nice and mushy by the time you get them out.

Add the bicarb and stir to combine (see aren’t you glad you used the deep dish?!)

Melt the butter and sugar together in the microwave (or on the stove if you prefer) and stir into the mixture. Add eggs and flour. Stir to combine.

Now you may want to sit down and eat the whole bowl of mixture right now....believe me I know...but be strong and spoon it into your cupcake pans and bake for 15-18 mins (for normal size ones) or 12-15 mins (for cute lil mini ones)

For the frosting I used some pre-made vanilla frosting and mixed some maple syrup through it. I was contemplating making some toffee shards or something to go with them as well but I kind of believe that if you get too fancy and start adding too many layers on then it can take away from the cupcake itself. Fair enough if you have a plain vanilla or plain chocolate cake, layer it up with all you like, but when it comes to something like a sticky date cupcake, I think a hint of maple in the frosting is all you need to set the flavours off because a) I think the less is more approach is the way to go when it comes to cupcake decorating and b)there is nothing worse than going to a cupcake shop and they look so delicious but underneath that tower of creamy frosting is a very average cake, it should be about the two coming together to make something spectacular you know?! Ok rant over, moving on!

Chocolate Cupcakes (I got 9 normal size + 14 mini cupcakes out of this recipe so I’d say 15 normal sized?)

This recipe is from a book my Mum gave me and the first time I made it I was very hesitant as the mixture is quite thick, but my god does it make some good cupcakes!!

You will need:

125g butter
2/3 cup caster sugar
2 eggs
1.25 cups self raising flour
1/3 cup milk
3 tbspns cocoa

Pre-heat oven to 160C and line your cupcake trays.

Melt the butter and sugar together in the microwave.

Using an electric mixer, add eggs, milk and cocoa and beat until well combined.

Add flour and beat for 2-3 mins until everything is mixed in.

The mixture looks a bit like mousse at this stage :) which actually makes it a hell of alot easier to spoon into your cupcake pans! Fill the pans about ¾ and bake for around 15 mins or until cupcakes bounce back when poked.

I frosted these ones with a pre-made chocolate frosting and topped them with a mini oreo just to make them look cute.

And while we are on a cupcake theme, check out my new Cupcake Locket!

And look at all those gorgeous people in it :)

And did I mention I have something very special in the works for you on Thursday?? Stay tuned!!

Happy Baking everyone xx


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