People have been asking me since I received my brand new mixer, have I done any baking (and am I inviting them over for baked goods?) The answer is yes and yes! I have been baking like crazy. And it is a funny thing but if you have been looking at my blog for a while, you’ll probably realise that I am definitely not the baking type for two reasons: 1) I don’t have a sweet tooth and 2) I don’t have a lot of patience to measure things!
Well I am happy to announce that this has turned around and I have been embracing baking. I think it appeals to the scientist in me because baking, after all, seems to me a bit of an alchemy rather than an art. The boys at the office have been rather happy because they get to eat these baked things (I still don’t much care to eat them, to be perfectly honest and Josh is going to get really fat at this rate so I have to take them away from him).
So after having been given a quick lesson in cupcakes by April of My Food Trail, I have been experimenting with a few cupcake recipes and different type of frosting and I am happy to announce my own combination of these little beauties.
I baked these for my mother-in-law’s birthday dinner and I shall name them after her. With out further ado, I would like to present Lynnette: rich chocolate cupcake with lemon butter cream frosting.
Rich Chocolate Cupcake
(Makes 12-14 standard sized cupcakes – note I use standard Australian cooking measurements)
Preheat your oven to 180’c (no fan).
Creaming butter base:
- 100 g. butter (salted, unsalted, whatever. I prefer cultured butter but it doesn’t make that much difference)
- 1 1/4 cup (280 g.) caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla concentrate (or 2 tsp vanilla extract)
Cream butter in the mixer on low at first and then shift to high for about 2 minutes. Add half of the caster sugar, beat for further 2 minutes. Repeat with the rest of the sugar. Cream until the butter mixture is light and fluffy. Add an egg, beat for further minute. Repeat the same with the other egg and vanilla.
Good ol’ chocolatey goodness:
- 1/2 cup baking cocoa powder
- 1 heap tbsp instant coffee powder
- 1/2 hot water
- 1/2 cup water
Whisk together the cocoa powder, coffee powder and hot water to make a thick, lump-free paste. Add water and mix thoroughly.
Flour and magic:
- 1 1/2 cups (225 g.) plain flour
- 1 tsp bi-carb soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- a big pinch of salt (cut the salt if you’re using salted butter
Soft together plain flour, bi-carb, baking powder and salt.
Putting it all together:
Add half of the flour and half of the cocoa mixture to the creamed butter mixture. Mix on low speed until combined. Repeat the process. Mix just until everything is combined.
Bake in a 12-hole muffin tin for about 20-30 minutes until toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool on a cake rack for at least half an hour before icing.
Lemon Butter Cream Frosting
- zest 1 lemon
- 1/4 cup sweet lemon juice (I used home grown sweet variety which is subtler, you can try commercial lemons)
- 100g. butter (salted, unsalted, whatever but cultured butter is nice)
- 4 cups (600g.) icing mixture (you can use icing sugar but I find it too much of a pain to sift personally)
Cream butter in a mixer on low at first then high. Add half the lemon juice, lemon zest and icing mixture. Mix for another minute. Repeat the same process with the rest of the lemon juice. Beat on high until light and fluffy.
Ice with a piping bag and large star tip.
How’s that for my first ‘proper’ baking post?
This time last year I made: Char-grilled Steak, Asparagus and Burnt Sage Butter Mashed Potatoes