Strawberries and Cream Cupcakes for Breast & Prostate Cancer Bake Sale – 26th October 2012

Next Friday (26th October) I will be baking for Breast Cancer for the work
bake sale and as such I have been looking for a ‘pink’ cake recipe!  I was
delighted when I came across Rachel Allen’s cupcakes in the BBC Good Food Magazine for October.  They looked beautiful and fulfilled the pink
criteria!  So I thought I’d make some and take them to my hair salon on
Saturday as they have particularly fine palettes and will give me
constructive feedback for improvements!

However the problem was, when I’d make the cakes I was preparing the icing
and realised – oh no – I’d run out of icing sugar!!  But all was not lost
as I’d previously come across at Cook Yourself Thin recipe for Strawberry
cupcakes with a meringue icing which I was also keen to try out.  So these
cakes ended up being a mixture of both recipes!

Rachel Allen’s cupcakes were a straightforward vanilla sponge mixture to which I added half a tea spoon of strawberry jam.  I did this by putting in one dessert spoon of cake batter, adding the jam and then adding the second dessert spoon of cake batter.  In real life the jam sunk to the bottom because I followed Rachel’s cooking temperature of 140 degrees for a fan assisted oven, having tried this once in my oven I now realise I needed to cook them at 160 degrees in the fan assisted oven to ensure the cakes baked quickly enough that the jam didn’t have time to sink to the bottom.

125 g Butter, softened
200 g Caster sugar
3 Eggs
150 ml Milk
1 tsp Vanilla extract
300 g Plain flour
3 tsp Baking powder
1/2 tsp Salt

1) Preheat oven to 160 degrees

2) Line muffin tin with cupcake cases

3) Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

4) Mix all wet ingredients together and beat until the eggs are combined gently with other ingredients.

5) Sieve all dried ingredients and fold together with a metal spoon to ensure as much air as possible remains in the mixture.

6) Add a little of both ingredients one after the other whilst free-standing mixture does the hard work – start with the wet ingredients.

7) When all is combined, spoon into cake cases.  If you’d like to add jam, see note above.

8) Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until golden and remove from oven to cool on a cooling rack until cold.  If you are making the meringue icing that follows, you will need to put the cakes in the fridge for a short time to ensure they are properly chilled.

Gizzi Erskine’s Icing:
150g fructose sugar
2 tablespoon crushed strawberries
¼ teaspoon crème tartar
1 egg white
pinch salt
Fresh strawberries to top

Method – this is entirely Gizzi’s…

1) Put all ingredients in a big mixing bowl over a pan of boiling water.

2) Stir with a clean metal spoon for 2 minutes exactly to dissolve the sugar.

3) When the mixture is warm and the 2 minutes are up, remove the bowl from the heat and beat with a whisk. Whisk for 9 minutes until cool.

4) The mixture is ready to use when it’s standing up like snow-covered Swiss peaks.

5) EIther pipe (in the normal way) or lather onto cakes with a pallet knife.

6) Cut some strawberries in half and place one on top of each cake when ready to serve.  Do not put the strawberries onto the cakes if you are transporting them (i.e. taking to work or your Nan’s etc) as the strawberry is likely to fall off.  I think 2 out of 12 made it to the salon in one piece – they the icing is incredibly delicious!

Those in the salon gave this a definite thumbs up!


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