Lemon and Honey Cupcakes

I’ve caught the flu after ions and ions. Haven’t felt so bad in forever and decided that today that I have the energy to actually do something in and about the house and received a polite request from Mike to make something sweet for him 🙂

Since I’m avoiding leaving the house until I need to (tomorrow for work) I have scavenged what I had in the house and decided to make lemon and honey cupcakes with some blue fondant 😀

INGREDIENTS: makes 10

110gr butter

3/4 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 1/2 cup flour

1 pinch salt

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 milk

1 piece of ginger (as big as the top part of your thumb)

1/4 cup honey

1 tbsp lemon juice

zest of a lemon

Blue fondant

1tbsp of honey and lemon juice

edible glitter (optional)

Put the milk in a bowl with the ginger and heat it in the microwave for 1 minute. Let it cool completely. Turn oven on 180° and line a cupcake tray. Beat butter and sugar together and add one egg at the time. Combine the dry ingredients in one bowl. Take the ginger out of the milk and add the honey, lemon and zest. Add the flour to the butter and alternate with the milk. Pour the batter in the cupcake tray and put in the oven for 18 minutes. Let them cool.

Now roll out the fondant. I used a stencil to make some shapes on the surface. Place it on top of the fondant and roll to impress the images on the fondant.

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Then with a cookie cutter or a glass, cut circles in the fondant to make the cupcake toppers. If you have any sprinkle some edible glitter on them 🙂

 

Now mix the extra honey and lemon juice in a small bowl and pour some over each cupcake and cover with the fondant toppers. Make sure it cover the whole surface evenly.

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Enjoy ciao for now! xox

Mini Lemon Meringue Cupcakes

Another week always calls for another dessert 🙂 I’ve made lemon meringue in other forms and shapes (macarons and profiteroles which were both YUUUUM) but this time I wanted to go teeny tiny with the cupcakes. I bought a mini cupcake tray ages ago and never was able to use it as I always forgot to buy the liners for them. I know they are not necessary but they look neater if they are in a case 🙂 I will admit I had 5 the night I made them. They are just so small and so guilt free you can’t feel bad for eating that many 😛

INGREDIENTS- makes 12 minis

For the cupcakes-

70gr butter

1/2 cup of sugar

1 egg

1/2 cup of flour

1/3 cup milk

1 tsp baking powder

1 tbsp lemon juice

For the lemon curd-

juice from 2 lemons

1/2 cup sugar

3 eggs

60 gr of butter, cubed

For the meringue-

2 gg whites

1/4 cup sugar

1 tsp cream of tartar

Start with the curd. In a saucepan heat the juice, sugar and eggs. Stir continuously until it starts to thicken, this might take 5minutes or so. Once it starts sticking to the spatula or spoon, take off the heat.

 

If you feel like there is egg residue, you can sieve it in a bowl. Once you poured it in a metal or glass bowl, add the butter and mix until completely melted. Lastly, cover the curd with cling film in a way that it touches the curd, leaving no air between it and the film. Let it cool completely and then place in the fridge until use.

Turn on oven at 180°. Line the cupcake tray. Beat the butter and the sugar together; then  add the egg. Scrape down the bowl and mix in the flour, baking powder. Lastly add the mix and the lemon juice. Pour in the tray and bake for 15-20 minutes.

Once they have cooled, with a tsp dig a small well in the centre of the cupcake.

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Pour the curd in a piping bag. Pipe into the cupcakes from within the well towards the outside in a circular movement as to cover almost all the cupcake’s surface.

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Now you can make the meringue. Beat the egg whites and slowly add in the sugar and the cream of tartar. Once it reached stiff peaks, put in a piping bag and pipe in top of the curd. You don’t need a nozzle for this, simply cutting the end of the bag is fine, but you can add some aesthetic by using a star nozzle or similar.

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Set the oven on grill at a high temperature. Place all the cupcakes on a baking tray and put in the oven, close to the grill. Keep an eye on them as they might burn quickly. It should take 1 minutes or so to brown. Take out and serve. Otherwise keep in the fridge 🙂

 

Ciao for now 🙂 xox

Red Velvet cupcakes with Buttercream roses

I’ve a lovely week off work so far. Managed to catch up on many little things that I’d left behind (house chores and whatnot) and finally have done all of it! YAY. Nonetheless still went to the office this morning just to check out some stuff and thought it would be nice to give a little gift to the admin ladies 🙂 nothing better than a pickup on Hump day Wednesday.

INGREDIENTS- makes 18

For the cupcakes- 

180ml veg oil

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 eggs

2 1/3 cups flour

2 tbsp cocoa powder

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

2 tsp white vinegar

250 buttermilk (or 250milk of milk and add 2 tsp lemon let it sit for 5 minutes)

red food colouring (as much as needed)

For the buttercream-

400gr butter, soft

4 cups icing sugar

2tsp toffee essence

red,blue and yellow food colouring

Turn oven on 180°. Sift the flour, the cocoa powder and the baking powder together. In a separate bowl, mix the oil and the sugar until combined and then add the eggs. Scrape down the bowl and alternate the flour mixture with the buttermilk. in a small glass pour the white vinegar and the baking soda. Let it foam and add in the batter along with the red food colouring. Depending on how strong the colour is you might need to put more or less. Now divide the batter in the cupcakes tray and bake for 20 minutes. Let cool completely before piping frosting on them.

Make the buttercream. Beat the butter, icing sugar and toffee essence together. Divide the buttercream in two bowl: one i dyed blue and the other orange (mixing 1 drop of red and 3-4 of yellow).

Now put each in a piping bag. For the orange roses I used a nozzle N104 and for the blue flowers and roses I used a nozzle N61 with different techniques. I have uploaded the videos of how to make these on Youtube and should be linked in the blog also. Sorry for the low quality but at least I hope it’s easier to see rather than to read how to do this! 🙂

For some cupcakes I cut off the top so to level it out, making it easier for me to pipe, but you don’t have to if you don’t want to.

Starting with the roses (n104) start piping at the centre , pointing the widest part of the nozzle towards the bottom touching the cupcakes, and rotate the cupcake so to make an open circle.

 

And start making smaller petals around always with circular movement around the centre of the cupcakes.

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This will build up outwards making a lovely rose :)Watch the video below for more detail.

Now for the other flowers I used a n61 nozzle. See the video below!

Et Voilà!

 

 

 

Ciao for now! xox

Rainbow cupcakes 

It has been a long and exciting weekend of seeing friends again a long time and of baking! I made not one, not two, but three different cakes in three days for different occasions.

These cupcakes were part of an ensemble for a unicorn themed birthday. I know I could’ve applied myself more and more something more decorative but the cake took most of my time which was quite limited to start with.

INGREDIENTS- makes 13

210gr butter

2 cups sugar

4 eggs

2 cups flour

1tsp baking powder

5 big tbsp plain yogurt

Blue, red, yellow, green food colouring

For the frosting-

250 gr cream cheese

3 cups of sugar ( keep extra if needed)

100 gr butter

Sprinkles and edible glitter

Turn oven on 180•. Beat butter and sugar until combined and then add the eggs. Scrape down the bowl and add the flour, yogurt, baking powder. Now divide the batter into 5 bowls and colour them green, red , blue, purple ( combine red and blue) and orange ( combine red and yellow.

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Now this is where i would change what I did. I suggest putting all these in different piping bags and dividing them into the tray. Doing so makes it easier, faster and it would make more cupcakes.

Start layering the colours from purple to blue to green to orange to red. I mixed some with a small spoon to make swirls. Bake for 20 mins.

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Make the frosting by beating all the ingredients together. Now I coloured the inside of a piping bag with blue and red. Just make a line with a brush. And spoon the frosting into it.

Pipe and sprinkle 😊


Ciao for now xox

Marble Cupcakes with Lime Buttercream

Another Monday has arrived (again, I’m late with posting things my apologies) and Cake Mondays has been confirmed officially. Although I was feeling a bit delicate on Sunday, after attending an amazing wedding on Saturday, I felt like making something tasteful and not too complicated.

INGREDIENTS: (makes approx. 24 fairy cupcakes)

For the cupcakes-

210gr butter, soft

1 1/2 cups sugar

3 eggs

1 1/2 cups flour

4 tbsp plain yogurt

1/2 cups cocoa powder

For the buttercream-

250gr butter, soft

3-4 cups icing sugar

1-2 tsp lime essence

For the decorations-

white and blue ready to roll icing

extra icing sugar

green, yellow and black food colouring (you will need some brushes)

Cup of water

Silver sugar pearls

Start with the cupcakes. Turn oven on 180°. Whisk the butter and the sugar together, then add the eggs. Scrape down the bowl and add the flour and the yogurt. Divide the batter in two bowls. In the second bowl add the cocoa powder. Line the cupcake trays and pour in a layer of white batter then top it with the chocolate one. With a toothpick roughly swirl the batter and bake for 20mins.

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In the meantime you can prepare the buttercream. Start whisking the butter and add the icing sugar a bit at the time and then the lime essence and food colouring. Put into a piping bag with a star nozzle and pipe on the completely cooled cupcakes.

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Now you can start making the flowers. In two separate bowls pour in one some yellow and the other black. Set aside. Get some al foil and shape it in a V shape in a way the stands for itself and where you can place the flowers to dry (check the pics later).

Roll out the white and the blue icings. You can use icing sugar as a sort of flour when rolling them out. Cut two circles from the blue, and 3 slightly smaller ones from the white. Make a small ball with the left over icing and flatten it slightly.

 

Now overlap the blue petals over the flattened ball. Wet the tip of your finger to help sticking the icings together. Don’t flood it though, slightly wet the borders that need to connect.Now overlap two white circles at the bottom of the blue petals. Lastly place the third white petal at the centre at the bottom of the white circles placed before.

 

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With a brush, lightly make a dent in the middle flower and bend inwards. Place the flower in the al foil rack to dry.

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Now with a small brush, coloured the central petal with some yellow and let dry.With a thin brush, make some black lines on the white petals, starting from the centre toward the outside and place a silver pearl in the middle of the flower.

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I made other simpler flowers using cutters and pinching the tips of the petals together. Once its all dry, you can place each flower on a cupcake. I kept them in the fridge overnight and kept them out of the fridge for at least 1-2hours before serving.

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They tasted great! Enjoy, Ciao for now! xox

 

 

 

 

Chocolate hazenut cupcakes with Swiss meringue and Toffee

As if the wonderful Game of Thrones cake was not enough, I made extra treats in case people wanted more to satisfy their sweet tooth.

INGREDIENTS: (makes 16)

For the cupcakes-

1 1/2 cups flour

3 eggs

1 1/2 cups sugar

140 gr butter

1 tsp baking powder

3 big tbsp sour cream

hazelnut essence (own preference for quantity)

2/4 cups cocoa powder

 

For the Swiss meringue-

4 egg whites

1 cup sugar

1 tsp cream of tartar

1 tsp lemon juice

 

For the toffee- (I made a lot so I could use it for the cake pops that I made out of the cut off of the previous cake 🙂 )

60gr butter

1 cup brown sugar

300ml cream

Making the cupcakes. Turn oven on 180°. Beat the sugar and the butter together then add an egg at the time. Add the dry ingredients and finish off with the essence and the sour cream. With an ice cream scoop or spoons, scoop the batter in cupcake liners and bake for 20 minutes and let cool completely.

In the meantime make your toffee topping. Put all the ingredients in a pan and let simmer until it reaches and thick and dense consistency. Set aside.

Make your swiss meringue by placing eggs, sugar and juice in heat proof bowl and place over a simmering pot of hot water. Mix until the sugar has been dissolved.

Now whisk adding cream of tartar. The meringue should be thick with hard peaks so keep on whisking until then and pour in a piping bag with your choice of nozzle. I used a star for this. Place cupcakes on a tray and Pipe with the meringue.

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Change the oven setting to grill at 150°. Put the cupcakes in the oven for 1-2 minutes. Keep an eye on them and make sure they don’t burn. Once they reach a nice golden tint take them out.

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Now you can pour the toffee sauce on the meringue to give it one last nice touch.

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I finally managed to use my stand again for this occasion making the display look a lot better than if on a tray.

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Hope you enjoy! Ciao for now xox

Snow globe coconut cupcakes

As mentioned before and as we all know it’s this time of the year again! Xmas is fast approaching people and how else could I express some creativity and employ my free time making? YES! New experiments and techniques, which to be honest I wasn’t sure were gonna work out completely but fortunately have.

I tried making quite a few gelatine bubbles following various recipes, which were all different and somewhat contradicting so I just went a bit those recipes and a bit with gut feeling and it turned out quite alright 🙂 Not perfect but they still pretty amazing.

No chocolate was allowed at this dinner so I went with coconut, which funnily enough worked out for the snow flaky effect on the frosting 🙂

INGREDIENTS:

For the frosting:

1 can of coconut cream
3 cups icing sugar
200 gr butter
150 gr shredded coconut

For the coconut balls:

200gr of shredded coconut
100gr condensed milk

For the cupcakes:

430gr flour
1tsp baking powder
270gr sugar
170gr butter
380gr milk
2 eggs
3 tbsp heated coconut cream

For the gelatine bubbles:

gelatine powder
water balloons+ spray oil (or oil its just easier with the spray)+ polystyrene surface AND something to place in the middle, could be small toys, cookies, or toothpicks with shapes like mine.

I would start by making the BALLOONS. This is in hindsight of course as I started doing other things before hand. But advice: start with the gelatine!

Blow up the balloons, as big or as small as you like.

Following instructions: I started by attaching a toothpick to the knot of the balloons with sticky tape. Spray the oil on them and spread it evenly.

Get a bowl that is big enough for a balloons to fit in and melt 2 tbsp on powdered gelatine in 4 tbsp and a bit of cold water. This should be good to cover at 5-6 balloons, depending on how big they are. It will be quite dense so mix it well and microwave for 10 seconds. Mix again and dip the balloons turning them in and trying to cover all its surface. Then stick the toothpick in the polystyrene surface. Mind you I did this in a couple of ways, note that because of the gelatine weight the balloons will lop sideways like so:xfn

Or others just as experiment, without a toothpick attached to them, I simply put in one of the holes in the shape and let them dry upright. I discovered that the position doesn’t matter its the layers. So repeat the same process 3-4 times, waiting at least 10-15 minutes for each to sort of set, and then let set for 12 hours at least.

The day after I did one more layer and let set for another 9-10 hours. Get the balloon and with a toothpick, make a hole next to the knot so that it deflates gently keeping the shape of the sphere I tried popping it in other places and it crumples up and takes the gelatine with it. Gently peel off the balloons from inside with your fingers and this is what I got.

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With some scissors cut the uneven bits at the end following the circle.

Now while the balloons are setting you can start reducing the coconut cream over a low heat, this should take an hour or so to completely reduce and become actual cream.

COCONUT BALLS: Mix 200gr shredded coconut and the condensed milk. With a small spoon make the portions and with the palm of your hand roll small balls and set in the fridge.

Turn on oven at 180°. For the CUPCAKES: place all dry ingredients in a bowl and mix. In a separate bowl combine milk, eggs and the coconut cream that is reducing from the stove. It wasn’t completely reduced you just need it to be still liquid enough to mix with the milk.

Now fill the cupcake tray with liners, fill in with half a tbsp and place a ball in the middle and then cover with more batter.

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Leave in the oven for 20 minutes and let them cool.

Now for the FROSTING: beat butter and icing sugar and slowly add the coconut cream (there should be 4 tbsp at least). Up to you if you want to add or put less, taste it and see how you feel. Remember you might have to compensate with more sugar if it gets too liquid. Pour in a piping bag. I just cut the end of the bag didn’t use a nozzle for this.

In a bowl place 150gr shredded coconut. Pipe the cupcakes with a simple circular movement from outside towards the centre and dip the cupcakes in the coconut. You can add more with your hands if necessary, but this should do the trick.

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Now, stick a figurine or shape on top and cover with the gelatine bubble.

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I added some glitter to make it prettier, shame you can’t really see it from the picture.

And there you have your lovely snow globes! 🙂 I kept them in the fridge before serving, it is way too hot here to keep out as they might spoil.

Enjoy ciao for now! xox

Chocolate cupcakes 

As sure as the sun comes up what is the first thing I do when I finish ALL my exams? Yes! I BAKE!

Like most of my dinners this was a last minute ( I was told about it when revising this morning). Surely I have something in my kitchen to make something quick easy and yummy! And indeed…I made this recipe up just from what I had in my pantry and fridge and it tastes great.

INGREDIENTS: (makes 11)

50gr butter melted butter

1cup white sugar

1tbsp veg oil

2 eggs

2 1/4 cups flour

1 tsp baking powder

30gr cocoa powder

1 cup buttermilk

Chocolate ganache

For the topping

200gr double cream

Box of blueberries

Turn oven on 180•. Whisk butter, sugar and oil.whisk in the eggs and the dry ingredients. Add the buttermilk last. Fill cupcake liners and bake for 20 minutes.

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Let them cool.  With a knife make a circle in the middle of the cupcake and take out the centre. Fill the centre with chocolate ganache.

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Whip the cream and put in a piping bag with with a star nozzle. Pipe the cream on the cupcake. With a circular movement start piping from the side toward the middle.

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Now give it the finishing touch with some blueberries on top. And place in the fridge until ready to serve.

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There you have it ! Enjoy

Ciao for now xox

Key Lime cupcakes- UP!

Another house warming 🙂 not mine of course! I did propose to make an EPIC cake with M&Ms inside.. BUT finger food was highly suggested and required for this type of event. These are actually some of my mom’s favourite cupcakes (of the ones I make.. she does like pretty much any dessert on this earth <3)

These cupcakes aren’t JUST lime cupcakes.. they are key lime base cake, with a lemon curd heart and a key lime cream cheese frosting on the top. And seeing it was a house warming it seemed fit to give it a of a theme with one of the best Pixar movies made recently.. UP! 🙂

INGREDIENTS:  Main- 3key limes 1 lemon

For the Cupcakes:

3cups flour

2cups sugar

1tsp baking powder

226 gr butter

6 eggs

2tbsp lime zest

1/2 cup milk

For the Curd:

3 eggs

60 gr butter

1/4 lemon juice

3/4 sugar

1tbsp lemon zest

For the Frosting:

3cups icing sugar (depending on how dense or firm you want it add more or less)

226gr butter

220gr cream cheese

4 food colourings (your choice, I used the basic red, blue,yellow and green)

Coloured icing fondant (again any colour or use white and you can die it)

the rest of the lime juice and lime zest (tbsp each or a bit more)

Turn oven on to 180°. Line the cupcake tray with different coloured holders. Beat butter till fluffy and add the sugar till combined.

Add an egg at the time and scrape down the bowl after each addition. Add the sifted dry ingredients and lastly add the milk and the zest.

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I usually use spoons but to make them more equal in size, I used an ice cream scoop. Fill them 3/4 of the liner and then put them in the oven for 20 minutes.

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In the meantime make the curd. In a heat proof bowl, mix the eggs, the sugar, lemon juice and zest. Place over a simmering pot of water and mix for 6-8 minutes until it becomes creamy. Take off the stove and sieve it to eliminate the egg remnants.

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Mix the butter in. Cover with cling film and place it in the fridge till it sets.

While the cupcakes are cooling, make the frosting.

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Beat the butter and the cream cheese adding a cup of icing sugar at the time. Add the lime zest and the juice.

Divide them in 4 bowls and colour each one of a different colour.

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Once the cupcakes are cooled, with a knife cut out a the centre.

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Fill the holes with the chilled lemon curd.

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Frost. I just spread it on top without using piping bags.

Now for the house. I cut a circle of white fondant to cover the top of one of the cupcakes.

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I’ll indicate the colours I used to make it simpler to understand but feel free to use any other.

I cut a blue rectangle to be part of the roof.

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Cut two yellow smaller rectangles (one smaller than the other) to be the house.

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And now with other colours make the windows, the roof and the chimney by always cutting the fondant in smaller rectangles and shapes.

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Now to put it all together. On the base of a large/long parchment paper,piping some blue lines that will be te balloons strings. Place the house under the lines and put the balloons on top as you see fit!

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And that’s all 🙂

Enjoy. Ciao for now xox

Oreo and Berry Cheesecake Cupcakes

I bake for many reasons and on many occasions: birthdays and dinners are a given, when I’m happy, when I’m stressed, when I’m sad and need to get my head clear and not think of anything. I realise that food doesn’t solve problems, but it does make you feel much better, even if only temporarily 😛

I checked what I had in my cupboard and made these little delights!

INGREDIENTS: (makes 6)

1 pack of Oreo cookies (7 cookies)
20gr melted butter
250gr cream cheese
3 tbsp sugar
1egg
orange zest
Orange juice from half orange

2 tbsp Mixed Berry jam+1 tbsp water

6 Strawberries

Turn oven on 180°. Blitz the Oreo cookies until they are crumbed and then combine the melted butter (either with your hands or with a fork).

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Line a cupcake tray and fill the holder with the cookie base. Press firmly so the cookies stick to the liner and bake for 5 minutes.

When they are cooling, whisk cream cheese, sugar, zest and juice together and finally add the egg. Pour the batter in the holders and then bake for 25minutes.

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When mine came out they weren’t solid like normal cupcakes, but I assume this is because of the absence of flour keeping it together so they were slightly wobbly.

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Let them cool completely before putting them in the fridge. Put the jam and the water in a bowl and microwave for 20seconds, this is to substitute making a berry sauce. Mix it well cover the cheesecakes. Finally place a strawberry on top.

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If you try use the silicone liners, as they are perfect for this type of thing. I left them in Italy 😦 but I’ll have to invest in some quite soon again! 🙂

Peel the cheesecakes and this is what you should get 🙂

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I couldn’t resist and took a bite…..Yummmmmmmmmmm

Enjoy! Ciao for now!! xox