RECIPE: STRAWBERRIES AND CREAM CUPCAKES

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Hello my lovelies! With the recent return of the Great British Bake Off, Wednesday nights have become a particular source of inspiration as I find myself itching to bake. However, before I could cause any chaos in the kitchen, a quick visit to the shops was in order to load up on all the necessary baking utensils, and that’s when I stumbled across the terrific cupcake moulds you see before you! Shaped like teacups, these silicone cupcake moulds can withstand a heat up to 260° in the oven – oh and did I mention that they came to the grand total of £1 from Poundland? I’ll just let you heist that jaw of yours back up from the floor…
Armed with a piping bag in one hand and my trusty whisk in the other, I wanted to make something summery and indulgent and who doesn’t love a good old strawberries and cream combo? Having been bitten by the baking bug a little later on in life, I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve never been skilled in the culinary arts, however I promise you that if I can make these delicious cupcakes, anyone can! They’re quick, easy and oh so scrumptious, so let’s get started!
You will need:
For the cakes –
175g (6oz) caster sugar
175g (6oz) self-raising flour, sifted
175g (6oz) unsalted butter, softened
3 large free-range eggs, beaten
1 tsp of vanilla extract
For the icing –
400g (14oz) full-fat Philadelphia cheese
300g (10oz) icing sugar, sifted
250g (9oz) strawberries, blended to a puree
1/ Firstly, you want to preheat your oven to 180 C, 160 C for fan assisted ovens, or Gas 4. Line a 12-tin muffin tray with 8-12 of your silicone (or regular) cupcake cases. I also like to lightly butter the insides of my cases so that the sponge doesn’t stick or burn
2/ Mix the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy – note, this could take some time, so be patient! Gradually incorporate your eggs into the mixture, adding a sprinkle of flour where you see fit if you fear the batter may split
3/ When the eggs are neatly mixed, you may then continue to add your vanilla extract and fold in your flour. I did this gradually as there is the tendency of the mixture turning congealed if done too fast
4/ Divide your mixture between your cupcake cases – remember only to fill them half way as your cupcakes WILL rise! Cook on a middle shelf for about 20 minutes, checking when needed. When risen and golden, you may then transfer them onto a clean surface for cooling
5/ For the icing, simply beat your cream cheese, icing sugar and strawberry puree together to form a thick, shiny icing. Admittedly, this did take me up to 20 minutes to achieve as the mixture appears watery at first. Don’t fret! Just keep whisking until it thickens.
6/ Carefully apply your icing via piping bag or spoon onto the cooled cupcakes. If you prefer your icing hardened, store them in the fridge for about an hour. Top with chopped strawberries or sprinkles (I did both!) and enjoy!

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