Suzy’s Strawberry Cupcakes

When you look at a cupcake, you’ve got to smile. – Anne Byrn

Suzy's Strawberry Cupcakes

Suzy’s Strawberry Cupcakes

I am pleased to say that the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning – Macmillan Cancer Support at York St John University was a huge success. We raised over £360!
For my entry to the bake-off competition,  I made some strawberry and white chocolate cupcakes. Although they sadly did not win (you can’t win them all I suppose!) they did sell out extremely quickly and I had some really lovely feedback. As such, I feel confident to share this recipe with you. 
One of the trickiest things for me was trying to get a strong strawberry taste but I think (hope!) I have managed it, thanks to Pamela for the tip!

Suzy’s Strawberry Cupcakes

Makes 12

Ingredients

2 punnets of strawberries, washed and hulled
150gr. Self-raising flour
120gr. Butter
120gr. Caster sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1\2tsp. Baking powder
250gr. White chocolate
4tbsp. Double cream
1tbsp. Balsamic vinegar
1further tbsp. Caster sugar
Pink food colouring
(some extra milk)

Method

  1. You will need to make the icing the night before so it firms up enough to pipe onto your cupcakes.
  2. To make the icing, chop up 6-8 strawberries and add to a metal saucepan.
  3. Into the saucepan, add the balsamic vinegar and a tablespoon of caster sugar.
  4. Gently, on a low heat, mash up the strawberries with a fork and mix well.
  5. Once all the strawberries have broken up, pass through a sieve into a jug. You will need 2 tbsp. strawberry coulis for the icing. Leave to cool.
  6. Break up 200gr. white chocolate into a saucepan
  7. Add 4tbsp. double cream to the pan and heat up on the lowest setting until just melted. Stir with a spatula every so often to thoroughly incorporate the cream and chocolate and to ensure the mixture does not burn.
  8. Mix in 2tbsp. of the strawberry coulis. It’s fine if you mix in slightly more, but no more than 3 tbsp.
  9. Pour into a bowl and leave to cool. Once cooled cover with Clingfilm and place in the fridge to firm up overnight.
  10. The next day…
  11. Line a 12 hole bun tin with cupcake cases.
  12. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until you get a light and fluffy texture.
  13. Add the eggs with half the flour and whisk.
  14. Fold in the rest of the flour.
  15. Blend about 12 strawberries in a food processer, pass through a sieve and add to the rest of the cake mixture and mix through.
  16. You should get a dropping consistency so if the mixture is too liquid, add some more flour, or if it is too firm, add some extra milk until you get the consistency required.
  17. Add an equal amount of mixture to each cupcake case. For this I use an ice-cream scoop which means I get the same size of cupcake nearly every time. My oven seems to have different ideas!
  18. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes. They are ready when they are golden brown and you can stick a skewer in the cake and it comes out clean.
  19. After they come out of the oven, place them on a cooling rack to cool.
  20. Take the ganache icing out of the fridge. To make the icing look more pink, add some pink food colouring until it reaches your desired pinkness.
  21. Place the icing into a piping bag and pipe onto the cupcakes.
  22. For the decoration, take 12 small strawberries of equal size and dry them off as much as you can. Place onto the middle of the cupcake.
  23. Melt 50gr of white chocolate. (I melt the chocolate in a microwaveable bowl at 20 second intervals, stirring between each interval.)
  24. Drizzle over the cupcakes as per the picture above.

Suzy says:

  • Although they may take longer than normal cupcakes, I think the result is worth the time. I have been working on my decoration skills and this is one I was really pleased with.
  • Adding balsamic vinegar does seem to intensify the flavour of the strawberries and I would like to thank Pamela for this tip.

Banana Cake

Let them eat cake (Marie Antoinette)

Banana Cake

Banana Cake

I love using bananas in my baking and so this week, I opted to make the most of my overripe fruit bowl! I hope you like the recipe.

Banana Cake

Makes around 12 slices

Ingredients

285 gr. plain flour
1 tsp. baking powder
110 gr. butter
100 gr. caster sugar
115 gr. soft brown sugar
2 free range large eggs
4 ripe bananas
85 ml natural Greek yoghurt
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to Gas 4/180C/350F.
  2. Grease a 20cm loaf tin.
  3. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  4. In a separate bowl, mash the bananas with the yoghurt and vanilla essence, then stir into the butter and sugar mixture.
    Add the eggs and mix well.
  5. Fold in the flour and baking powder until well incorporated.
  6. Pour the mixture into the loaf tin.
  7. Place into the oven for about an hour or until well risen and golden.
  8. Take out of the oven and leave in the tin for a few minutes before turning it out onto a cooling rack.

Suzy says

  • No need to ice the cake, it is lovely just as it is!
  • If you have any more overripe bananas, chop them up and put them in the freezer to make my Suzy sorbet 🙂

 

 

Chocolate Cornflake Cakes

There is nothing better than a friend, unless it is a friend with chocolate (Charles Dickens)

Chocolate Cornflake Cakes

Chocolate Cornflake Cakes

Who would have believed that cornflake cakes would be my first blogger’s hurdle?! Well, it’s only taken me three attempts and although I really wanted to make these as an Easter treat, I have finally managed to produce a batch I am happy with. Thank you to my mother-in-law Carmen from who I have adapted this recipe – I think it is awesome and I hope you agree!

Chocolate Cornflake Cakes

makes 12 cakes

Ingredients

3 full size mars bars
50 gr. milk chocolate
85 gr. margarine
114 grams cornflakes
2 packets of Smarties

Method

  1. Place 12 cupcake cases into a muffin tin.
  2. Chop up the mars bars and put them in a saucepan with the butter.
  3. On the lowest heat setting, stir until melted. (You may need to take the pan off the heat and stir until fully incorporated
  4. Add the cornflakes into a bowl and stir in the melted chocolate until all the cornflakes have been covered.
  5. Using your hands make 12 cornflake balls and place them in the cupcake cases.
  6. Add three Smarties on top of each cupcake case.

Suzy says:-

  • At Easter time, you can try using mini eggs instead of Smarties.
  • I tried the mixture with bran flakes after my first successful attempt and they were awesome too!
  • I use my hands to cover the cornflakes with chocolate but always wear gloves (to keep my skin young and beautiful!)