Scotty and I love pooches. We even have two little poochie friends of his own (Honey and Macca) who are wonderful companions with great temperaments.
Last Monday was Cupcake Day for the RSPCA and given our love of animals we thought it would be great if we took part by making batches of cupcakes to take to work.
We each made 24 cupcakes and then divided the spoils and took them to our respective workplaces. I made 12 red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting and 12 honey roasted cashew cupcakes, and Scotty made 24 vanilla and chocolate swirl cupcakes with chocolate frosting and a surprise malteaser centre. Here is a piccie of Scotty’s cupcakes – just look at his great frosting skills!
We spent a couple of hours each in the kitchen making, baking and icing our creations (at separate times so that we didn’t get in each others way) then each took 6 red velvets, 6 honey roasteds and 12 vanilla choc surprises each to work for our colleagues to enjoy for a gold coin donation (far cheaper than our local coffee shop cupcakes – and better tasting too!).
Needless to say they were an absolute success! Scotty had never made cupcakes before and so used his extreme creativity to make something truly unique, while I made Red Velvets which I had always wanted to try my hand at, and I managed to modify an earlier recipe I had created (Honey and Hazelnut Cupcakes) to use truly indulgent honey roasted cashews and add a butter cream frosting.
With the help of two other colleagues who also baked, my lot sold out at 11am (we started selling them at 9:30am) and at Scotty’s end with a few more colleagues taking up the baking challenge, his lot sold out at 3pm.
Recipes for the tasty Red Velvet Cupcakes and Honey Roasted Cashew Cupcakes are below for you to try!
RED VELVET CUPCAKES
60 g unsalted butter, room temp
150 g caster sugar
1 large egg, lightly beaten
10 g cocoa powder
20ml red food colouring
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
120 ml buttermilk
150 g plain flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon bicarb soda
1 1/2 teaspoon white wine vinegar
CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
300 g Icing sugar, sifted
50 g Unsalted butter, room temp
125 g Cream Cheese, slightly softened
Preheat the oven to 170c. Line a 12-hole cupcake tin with patty cases. Place butter and sugar in a medium bowl and beat with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Slowly add the egg and beat until everything is well mixed.
In a small bowl, mix the food colouring, cocoa powder and vanilla extract until it makes a thick paste.
Add the paste to the butter mixture and beat thoroughly until the colour is mixed evenly through the batter. Be sure to scrape down any stray batter from the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. The mix should be a deep rose pink/red.
On slow speed, slowly add half the buttermilk until well mixed then add half the flour until well mixed. Repeat for the remaining milk and flour, beating until the mixture is smooth.
Add the salt, bicarb and vinegar, turning up the speed and beating for a couple more minutes.Spoon a heaped tablespoon of mixture into each paper cases until no more than two-thirds full.
Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the top of a cupcake bounces back when lightly touched. (A skewer inserted in the centre should come out clean). Once the cupcakes have cooled slightly in the tray, remove them and place on a wire rack to cool completely.
Meanwhile, prepare the cream cheese frosting. In a food processor or electric mixer, beat the icing sugar and butter until well mixed.Dice the cream cheese into smaller cubes then add to the mix, beating until completely combined.
On medium-high speed, continue beating the frosting until it becomes light and fluffy. This takes around five minutes. When the cupcakes are cold, pipe the cream cheese frosting on top.
HONEY ROASTED CASHEW CUPCAKES
2 cups self-raising flour, sifted
3/4 cup caster sugar
3/4 cup milk
125g butter, melted, cooled
2 x eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
1/4 cup honey roasted cashews, roughly chopped
12 honey roasted cashews for decoration
150g butter, softened
250g icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 tsp hot water
Preheat oven to 200°C. Grease a 12 x 1/3-cup capacity muffin pan. Alternatively, line holes with paper cases. Combine flour, caster sugar and honey roasted cashews in a bowl. Make a well in the centre.
Add milk, butter, eggs, vanilla to flour mixture. Using a large metal spoon, stir gently to combine.
Spoon mixture into prepared muffin pan. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Stand in pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.
For icing, beat together butter and sugar with an electric beater. Once well combined, add the vanilla and water. Beat until smooth and creamy.