Finally, THE Vanilla Cupcake

You may remember a while ago I was on the hunt for THE vanilla recipe which works well as a cake and cupcakes, well, I finally got it right after a few attempts.  These are wonderful iced or just on their own with a sprinkling of icing sugar or served with cream and berries.  I have made them a few times and they get rave reviews all around.

The vanilla cupcake

Vanilla Cupcakes

Ingredients

125ml sugar
125ml cooking oil
2 extra large eggs
250ml Greek Yogurt
5ml vanilla essence
500ml cake flour
5ml bicarbonate of soda
10ml baking powder
2.5ml salt

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 °C.
  2. Beat the sugar and oil together.
  3. Add the eggs and beat until the mixture is light and fluffy.
  4. Add the yogurt and vanilla essence.
  5. Sift the dry ingredients together and fold into the wet mixture – don’t over mix, a few lumps is fine.
  6. Spoon into 18 prepared muffin tins smoothing the top of the mixture.
  7. Bake for 15 minutes.  Ice as desired.
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In My Kitchen – December 2014

Well, the end of the year jumps on you before you know where you are.  Just a few more sleeps and we will be at the beginning of another new year.

As always a big thank you to Celia over at Fig Jam and Lime Cordial for hosting this fun monthly event.  It’s great fun peeking into so many beautiful and different kitchens each month.  Please remember Celia needs all IMK posts submitted by the 10th of every month.

In my kitchen…

A full month ago (I really do need to keep up to speed) were cupcakes for our neighbours.  Their beautiful little daughter Jasmine was born after mommy went through 2 days of labour so I thought celebratory cupcakes were in order.

Jasmine's cupcakes

Love the detail on the teddy’s

Jasmine's cupcakes 1

All pretty in pink for baby Jasmine

In my kitchen…

Is a red quinoa salad.  Not sure the red is any different to the white and would probably mix the two just for colour effect.  I keep saying quinoa on its own is very bland but in this salad is an absolute winner!

Red quinoa salad

In my kitchen…

Well, actually in my bathroom but I wanted to share with you the beautiful hand crafted ebony candle stick Pete brought back from Malawi for me.

Malawi ebony candle stick

In my kitchen…

Is a new kettle.  Our old one suddenly gave up the ghost and was I in for a surprise to see how expensive kettles have become.

kettle

In my kitchen…

Is a new shelf in the spice cupboard.  What a difference a little extra space makes.

spice cupboard

Things are still skew from the water damage we had. Oh what a memory, something I hope never to endure again.

In my kitchen…

Is some raw honey Pete and I bought on a trip away and on reading the label comes from just down the road from where we live.

Raw badger friendly honey

What’s in your kitchen this month?  Please remember to link back to Celia’s blog Fig Jam and Lime Cordial if you partake in the fun and drop her a quick note to let her know when your post will be up.

For Kim – Cupcake Icing (Frosting) video

Kim I am proud to say we finally managed to get the video done while Pete was home for a few days last week. 🙂

Dairy free cupcakes

No points to me though as Pete did all the work – the video, editing, music (all though I did chose the song) oh and iced the cupcakes.

I very excitedly started this post to upload the video but alas I have to purchase a video upgrade so Pete suggested I upload it to YouTube instead and place the link in this post. I have such a clever husband.

dairy free chocolate cupbake 1

Click here to watch the video on how to ice (frost) cupcakes.

In My Kitchen – March 2014

Here we are again at one of our favourite times of the month, sharing in Celia’s IMK Posts.  March came around very quickly.  The memories of the festive season are still vividly fresh in my mind as if it was all just last week.

In my kitchen…

Were some chocolate cupcakes.  These dairy free morsels are still my favourite and it’s just as well I don’t bake them every week as I would not stop eating them until they were all finished.

Dairy free cupcakes

In my kitchen…

Is my latest favourite indulgence.  This double cream Greek style plain yoghurt from Woolworths is FABULOUS and as addictive as the cupcakes.  Don’t think I could go a day without it and buy 2 big tubs at a time.

Greek yoghurt

In my kitchen…

Are non Nespresso coffee capsules.  Pete says these are as enjoyable as the Nespresso capsules and work out about R2 cheaper per cup.

Coffee  capsules

In my kitchen…

Are 2 new Tupperware containers.  I really didn’t need them but loved the colour and they were very reasonably priced.

tupperware

In my kitchen…

Is my ever loved fruit bowl, a gift from my Aunty Christine many years ago.  It has stood in the same spot on the kitchen counter for the past 11 years and has overflowed with  juicy sweet figs this season.

fruit bowl

Is my favourite, favourite wooden spoon.  I have put a teaspoon next to it so you can see how small it is.  I have searched everywhere but sadly I cannot find another one like it.  I am starting to think I must find somebody who can turn another one on a lathe for me.

mini woodenspoon

What’s in your kitchen this month?  Please remember to link back to Celia’s blog Fig Jam and Lime Cordial if you partake in the fun.

In My Kitchen – September 2013

In My Kitchen – September 2013

YAY, it’s officially Spring – so very exciting!   Even though we had a mild winter, anything below 25°C is cold for me, so I am super eager for the warmer weather to stick around and warm me up.

In my kitchen…

Is a batch of my current favourite cupcakes.  I never seems to go a week without baking a batch.  What a pity you don’t all live a little closer – I would bake you all a batch too. 🙂

cupcakes

In my kitchen…

Are 2 sets of espresso cups and saucers – sadly one of the red ones on the top left of the first pictures fell and broke when I was packing them away after taking the picture.  I have ideas of serving rich dark chocolate mousse out of them for a dinner party dessert, or possible crème brûlée.

heart espresso cups

espresso cups

In my kitchen…

This might seem a tad odd to you but after being in our home for 10 years, I finally had the brain wave to add another shelf to one of our glasses cupboards.   There was originally only one shelf as with the cupboard to the right (second picture).   What a difference a shelf makes.

cupboard 3rd shelf

cupboard 3rd shelf 2

In my kitchen…

This feels a little like déjà vu so apologies if I have shared this previously – is my strawberry scented hotty which Pete bought for me to keep me toasty when I sit and work in my office which is like a freezer in winter – great summer office though.

kitty hotty

In my kitchen…

Is my lunch – a sweet chilli and mayo chicken wrap with avo, spring onion and crispy lettuce with a grinding of black pepper.

chicken wrap

In my kitchen…

Is a jar of pistachio nuts.  They are Pete’s favourite after dinner snack.  I bought extra to make a pear, pistachio and chocolate cake but haven’t got around to baking it yet.

pist nuts

What’s in your kitchen this month?  Please remember to link back to Celia’s blog Fig Jam and Lime Cordial if you partake in the fun.

Olive Oil Chocolate Chiffon Cake

And yes I turned it into cupcakes! 🙂

My mom gave me this Angela Day recipe which she saw in the Monday 03 June 2013 issue of The Star’s Verve.  Angela was running a series for using olive oil in baking as a healthier alternative to other oils.

I love the idea of healthier baking, just wish it worked out more cost effective though as olive oil isn’t a particularly cheap product to use.   I would also stick to using a mild flavoured olive oil as the more robust oils may alter the taste of the cake.

The original recipe called for a chocolate glaze, which would have been lovely but sadly I didn’t have any dark chocolate on hand so made my standard icing.

The cupcakes turned out beautifully and I enjoyed lots of compliments when I served them for dessert with friends.

Olive oil chocolate chiffon cupcakes

Olive Oil Chocolate Chiffon Cake (Cupcakes)

The mixture made 18 muffin sized cupcakes

Ingredients

80ml cocoa powder
125ml hot water
250ml flour
10ml baking powder
125ml castor sugar
3ml salt
4 eggs separated
125ml olive oil
80ml extra castor sugar

Chocolate glaze
100g dark chocolate chopped
100ml cream

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Mix together the cocoa and hot water and set aside to cool.
  3. Sift the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt into a bowl.
  4. Make a well in the centre of the flour and add the egg yolks, olive oil and cooled cocoa mixture and mix until smooth.
  5. Beat the egg whites until stiff, then beat in the extra castor sugar.
  6. Fold this mixture into the cocoa mixture.
  7. Pour into an ungreased chiffon cake tin alternatively divide the mixture amongst 18 muffin tins lined with paper cases.
  8. Bake the cake for 30 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean alternatively if baking the cupcakes, bake for 10 minutes.
  9. Combine the chocolate and cream in a bowl and microwave on 50% power for 2 minutes and stir well until smooth.
  10. Refrigerate until thickened then pour over the cake or cupcakes. (The glaze is thinner than a ganache).

Dairy Free Chocolate Cupcakes which were meant to be a cake

But we know what I am like – a cake just has to be turned into cupcakes – I just cannot help myself!  I saw this recipe on the reverse side of a piece of paper for Kedgeree which I was supposed to make for Pete.  Oops!  Well, I never had any salmon or smoked trout on hand so couldn’t make the kedgeree anyway plus I have all these baking cases which need to be used and icing nozzles and piping bags and and and…  You know how it is, right?

Dairy free chocolate cupbakes

This recipe was printed in the 24 March 2013 edition of The Sunday Times, I think, as we only kept the one page insert and it doesn’t make any reference to the newspaper at all on either side of the page.

The cake was titled – Wacky one-pan eggless chocolate cake, you know one of those recipes where everything is mixed in one bowl – my kinda recipe.

No matter where the recipe came from, its fabulous – quick, easy and results in a lovely light, moist and spongy cupcake.  I made my normal butter icing and if you replace the milk with water, it is still technically dairy free as butter is classed as a fat.

dairy free chocolate cupbake 2

Dairy Free Chocolate Cupcakes

Ingredients

1½ cups cake flour
¾ cup caster sugar
¼ cup cocoa powder sifted
¾ tsp bicarbonate of soda
Pinch of salt – I would take this up to at least ½ tsp
5 tbsp sunflower oil
1 tbsp white vinegar
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 cup water
Fresh berries to serve – I never used berries
Icing sugar for dusting – I made icing, recipe below
Whipped cream to serve – I iced the cupcakes instead

Icing

300g icing sugar
50g butter at room temperature
2 tsp vanilla essence
±2 tbsp milk (water)

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Spray a 20cm cake pan with non stick cooking spray.  If you are making cupcakes, use a 2.5 litre jug.
  3. Place the flour, sugar, cocoa, bicarb and salt in this pan (jug) and mix.
  4. Using a wooden spoon, make one large indentation in the mixture and two smaller ones.
  5. Pour the oil into the large hole and the vinegar and vanilla into the smaller holes.
  6. Gradually add the water mixing until just combined.  Don’t over mix.
  7. Bake in the oven for 25 – 30 minutes.  Cool in the pan before turning out onto a rack.  Top with berries, dust with icing sugar and serve with the cream.
  8. Alternatively if you are making cupcakes, pour the mixture between 10 muffin sized prepared baking cases and baked for 15 minutes.  They dome beautifully.
  9. Combine the icing ingredients for 3 minutes and ice cupcakes once completely cooled.

dairy free chocolate cupbake 1

Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Icing

I have been craving a chocolate cupcake and wanted to try a new recipe so came about this one by combining, mixing adding and changing a whole bunch of recipes – got a little confused with what to leave in, take out, change, increase and decrease but in the end came up with what I believe it the perfect chocolate cupcake. 😀  They are light without being too much like a sponge cake, moist with the softest crumb and rose a little souffléish and settled down perfectly while on the cooling rack.  The icing is pretty much my standard with the added sparkle of fairy dust.  A few of my “taste-testers” also thoroughly enjoyed these, and highly recommend you give them a try.  Added bonus:  They keep very well so you don’t have to scoff them all in one day.

Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Icing

Ingredients

60ml cocoa powder
125ml boiling water
250ml cake flour
190ml castor sugar
5ml baking powder
2.5ml bicarbonate of soda
1ml salt
60ml oil
10ml vanilla essence
4 eggs separated (I am sure 3 would work equally as well)
1ml cream of tartar

Icing

60g butter
300g icing sugar
45ml cocoa powder
45ml milk
10ml vanilla essence

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Dissolve the cocoa in the water and allow to cool.
  3. Place the flour, sugar, baking powder, bicarb and salt in a bowl and make a hollow in the centre.
  4. Add the oil, vanilla essence, cocoa mixture and yolks and combine.
  5. Beat the egg whites and cream of tartar until still and fold into the flour mixture, starting with a third of the egg whites.
  6. Divide the mixture between 12 muffin sized tins lined with paper cases.
  7. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes.
  8. Allow to cool complete before icing.
  9. For the icing, beat all of the ingredients together for 3 minutes.

Birthday Cupcakes

Today is my birthday so thought it appropriate to celebrate with some vanilla cupcakes but could not decide between vanilla and chocolate icing so I made both.  I finished these delectable treats off with a sprinkling of glitter.  I have also heard this fun glitter called, pixie dust, fairy dust and crystals.  I am now on the hunt for new colours.  Its amazing how differently it reflects on the vanilla icing versus the chocolate icing – so pretty!

Birthday Cupcakes

Ingredients

4 egg whites
110g butter
1 cup sugar
¾ cup milk
2 tsp baking powder
1½ cups cake flour
¼ tsp salt

Icing*

250g icing sugar
30ml cocoa powder
50g butter at room temperature
10ml vanilla essence
25ml milk

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Beat the egg whites until stiff and set aside.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar.
  4. Add the milk alternating with the dry ingredients.
  5. Fold in the egg whites.
  6. Divide the mixture into 12 prepared muffins tins and bake for 15 minutes.

Icing*

  1. Beat all the ingredients together in a bowl for 3 minutes.
  2. Pipe over the cupcakes and sprinkle with glitter.

* If you are making vanilla icing, increase the icing sugar to 300g and omit the cocoa powder.

Cupcakes for two

My cupcake addiction is clearly getting out of hand so I decided to tone things down a bit and make just two – how cool is that!  If you are wanting a quick sweet treat after dinns and really feel like a cupcake but can’t warrant making a full recipe – no problem, this is the recipe for you.  Ovens vary and with just two little treasures in there to bake, I found it best to place one on each outer side of the muffin tray.  I wish I could give credit to the person I got this idea from but alas the memory has failed me.  Please remind me if you were the one who led me in this lovely direction.

Cupcakes for two

Ingredients

Non stick cooking spray
1 egg white
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
2 tbsp butter melted
¼cup flour
¼ tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
1 ½ tbsp milk

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Line a muffin pan with 2 paper cases and spray with non stick cooking spray.
  3. In a bowl whisk the egg white and sugar until combined.
  4. Add the remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
  5. Divide the batter between the 2 paper cases.
  6. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes.
  7. Cool and ice as desired.  I had some spare chocolate icing in the fridge which I used.

Tandy’s Cake into Cupcakes

I still wonder if there is a support group for people like me who just cannot resist the urge of turning every cake into cupcakes?  I just really like individual portions plus a cake can get all messy when you slice it.  A friend placed an “order” for more cupcakes and I remember seeing a recipe in Tandy’s book which I have had  for a while now and not having made anything from it yet, set to perusing her recipes, which are in alphabetical order so naturally I got to the cake recipe before the cupcake recipe which reminded me of a Nigella Lawson cake recipe and got stuck thinking this would surely work as cupcakes… Yes, they do! 😀

Tandy’s Cake

Ingredients

125g self raising flour
125g sugar
125g softened butter
2 large eggs
¼ cup milk
1 tsp baking powder
Zest of 1 orange – I omitted this
½ tsp vanilla extract – I used 1 tsp

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Place off of the ingredients in to a bowl and mix together well.
  3. Pour into a lined and buttered baking tin alternatively divide the mixture into 12 muffin tins lined with paper cases.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes alternatively for 15 minutes in muffin cases.

I made a chocolate icing using 50g butter, 250g icing sugar, 10ml vanilla extract and if memory serves, 30ml cocoa powder and 30ml milk.

Vanilla Cupcakes

I have bookmarked a couple of recipes to try from the first edition of the Baked and Delicious Magazine and first up were the Iced Vanilla Cupcakes.  So on with the new oven while Mom and I got all the ingredients ready to have some fun. Everything was going fine until we got to icing the cupcakes.  We followed the recipe verbatim so we are not sure what went wrong.  You would think it’s the first time we had done this!  It led to what looked like an explosion with the mess and a fit of giggles the entire afternoon.  Mom and I have decided that we won’t be using the icing recipe again though.

Iced Vanilla Cupcakes

taken from Baked and Delicious

Ingredients

125g unsalted butter sofented – we used salted butter
125g caster sugar
2 large eggs beaten
125g self raising flour sifted
2 tbsp milk
1tsp vanilla extract
2tbsp semi skimmed or whole milk
1tsp vanilla extract

Icing

75g unsalted butter softened -we used salted
2tbsp semi skimmed or whole milk
1tsp vanilla extract
225g icing sugar sifted
Raspberries to decorate – we used a little grated chocolate and chocolate drops

Method

  1. In a large bowl, beat the softened butter and sugar together until they are light and fluffy.
  2. Whisk in the beaten eggs, a little at a time, adding a spoonful of the measured flour to prevent the mixture curdling.
  3. Use a metal spoon to gently fold in the remaining flour and then add the milk and vanilla extract.
  4. Stand the [silicone] cupcake cases in a bun tin or on a large baking tray and divide the mixture equally between them (spoon the mixture into 12 muffin tins lined with paper cases).
  5. Bake in an oven preheated to 190°C until well risen and golden.  This will take between 15 and 20 minutes.  Remove and cool on a wire rack.

Icing

  1. In a large bowl beat the butter until completely soft.  Tip in the milk and vanilla extract, add half the sifted icing sugar and beat for several minutes.  Add the remaining  sugar and continue to beat until the mixture is light and fluffy  If you are adding food colouring, put it in a drop by drop until you get the desired shade you want.
  2. Take a good dolllop of icing onto an angled palette knife and spread it from the top to one side of the cake.
  3. Repeat for the other side until the cake is covered in a good layer.
  4. Finally, working from the centre outwards, move the palette knife anti-clockwise to create a decorative swirl.  If you don’t achieve perfection, pretty decorations or fresh berries cover a multitude of sins!  Apply straight after icing, before the topping sets.
See there in their last instruction, they are already setting you up for a hard time with their icing.  Maybe that’s why they recommend decorating them?

Nestle Cocoa Cupcakes

Not that I need another chocolate cake recipe in my arsenal BUT I just had to try the recipe which I found on the back of a Nestle cocoa wrapper and naturally turned them into cupcakes.  They were light, soft and spongy.  I was undecided on how to dress these airy treats – icing, glaze, caramel, whipped cream, jam, crunchy peanut butter, then I thought about a light dusting of icing sugar served with a scoop of ice cream would make a nice dessert.  Turns out our ate them undressed.

Nestle Cocoa Cupcakes

Ingredients

60ml cocoa
125ml hot water
250ml flour
10 ml baking powder
2.5ml salt
3 eggs seperated
60ml oil
220ml sugar
5ml vanilla essence

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C.
  2. Mix the cocoa with the water and allow to cool.
  3. Sift the flour baking powder and salt together.
  4. Combine the egg yolks, oil, sugar, vanilla essence and cocoa mixture
  5. Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix though.
  6. Beat the egg whites until stiff and fold gently into the cocoa mixture.
  7. Divide the mixture into 12 muffin tins lined with paper cases.
  8. Bakes for 12 to 15 minutes.

To Microwave – I did not try this metod

  1. Pour the mixture into a 21cm plastic ring mould.
  2. Microwave on medium high heat for 10 to 12 minutes.

Lemon and Poppy Seed Muffins

These have to be the best muffins ever – the crème de la crème of muffins.  THE muffin of all muffins, well for me that is.  They are light and spongy, slightly sticky on top, and make you hum with every bite and are perfect with a cup of tea.  I am actually thinking of renaming them Lemon and Poppy Seed Cupcakes and adding an icing glaze on top.  Just a thought for now.

Lemon and Poppy Seed Muffins

 

Ingredients

125ml cooking oil
125ml sugar
2 extra large eggs
250ml natural yoghurt or buttermilk
125ml lemon juice
3ml grated lemon rind
60ml poppy seeds
500ml cake flour
3ml bicarbonate of soda
15ml baking powder
2ml salt

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 °C.
  2. Beat the oil and sugar together.
  3. Add the eggs and beat until the mixture is light and fluffy.
  4. Add the yoghurt, lemon juice, rind and poppy seeds.
  5. Sift the dry ingredients together and fold into the wet mixture – the batter should still be lumpy.
  6. Spoon into greased muffin tins, filling each about two thirds full.
  7. Bake for 15 – 20 minutes until golden brown.

 

Submitted by:  Mandy Frielinghaus, Mauritius