Well now, who can resist an open invitation to join a crazy bunch of baking bloggers to submit an entry for a cupcake competition? When food24.com posted about the cupcake competition they are running, the entries started flooding in immediately, delicious little mouthfuls of cake and frosting….they get wilder and more wonderful as the days wear on. It has been interesting to see what creative ideas people come up with. I am a plain jane type of girland was rather hesitant to submit my rendition. But here I am at the last minute, yet again hehe with my little offering for the food24.com cupcake competition.
I love cupcakes and I love traditional flavours. I have had a pretty successful little homebakes business going the past few years and cupcakes have always been popular. I have come a long way from those original cupcakes that I used to bake. Over the years I have perfected my recipe and it honestly is the easiest cake recipe that you can ever hope to find. I have blogged it before, many times. You can ring the changes so easily with it by changing the flavours, either of the cupcake, the frosting, or both!
Recently, when attending the Cape Town Good Food and Wine Show I was introduced to some amazing gourmet soft toffees, wrapped in different candy striped wrappers and created by a family run company called Sweet Temptations. What amazing toffees, and such an exciting range of 17 flavours, ranging from creamy vanilla all the way through to cinnamon swirl and turkish delight…with lots of other delights in between. There is so much you can do with them. I had quite a few (blush) of the flavours in the range and had great plans for baking with them but sadly, they have all mostly met an untimely end thanks to my love of sweet things! I did however rescue one of my favourite flavours and decided to use it in my cupcake recipe. Do make friends with these lovely folk on twitter They are running a competition where one of their followers will win a basket of their toffees when they get to 100 followers.
Anyway, on to my cupcakes…..
I used my trusted recipe yet again, but this time I added the zest of half a ClemenGold to the cupcake together with 2 Tbs of some fantastic NoMU drinking chocolate. If you are lucky enough to live in South Africa the awesome ClemenGold citrus has once again hit the shelves at Woolworths. Do yourselves a favour and go and buy some. I love them. And I love the NoMU drinking chocolate as well so combining these two flavours in my cupcakes worked really very well. I brought the liquorice flavour into play by melting my toffee (sob) with a little bit of cream in the microwave and I whipped it into my buttercream frosting. Pure genius!!
EASY CITRUS CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES WITH SALTED LIQUORICE FROSTING
250ml Milk (I use ratio ¾ milk ¼ water)
60ml Coconut Oil (or sunflower oil)
500ml Cake Flour – sifted twice
30ml NoMU Drinking Chocolate
4 Jumbo Free Range Eggs
500ml White Granulated Sugar
10ml Baking Powder
5ml Vanilla Essence (I used the seeds from ½ Vanilla Pod)
5ml Brown Vinegar
Finely grated zest of half a ClemenGold
- Preheat Oven to 180 o C
- Line muffin trays with paper cups
- Boil Oil & Milk together (I do it in the microwave)
- Beat eggs & sugar together till pale & thick (about 5min on high)
- Add the vinegar, zest & vanilla & beat in
- Sift flour, baking powder, drinking chocolate & salt together
- Fold gently into beaten egg mixture
- Add hot milk & oil mixture
- Fold all together gently
- Pour about an ice cream scoop amount into each paper cup. They should be about 3/4 full
- Bake for 12 -15 minutes until a cocktail stick comes out clean
- Turn out onto wire cooling racks to cool completely before frosting
Makes about 36 muffin sized cupcakes
SALTED LIQUORICE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING
500ml Icing Sugar (confectioners sugar)
5ml Good quality Sea Salt Flakes (I use Maldon)
1 x 60g Liquorice Toffee bar – cut into small pieces
25ml Fresh Cream
Tiny drop of Black Gel Food Colouring
Place the toffee and cream into a glass bowl and microwave at short bursts until the toffee is melted and incorporated into the cream. It makes a thick paste. Stir in the salt flakes
Beat the butter until it is very pale and creamy.
Add the sugar (in two lots) beating well after each until the icing is thick and white
Add the liquorice mixture and beat all together.
Add a bit of milk to thin to a piping consistency
Add a tiny drop of Black Gel Food Colouring to get a good greeny black colour but not dark. I use a cocktail stick that I dip into the gel and what was on the tip of the stick was enough to colour the frosting.
Pipe or spread onto cooled cupcakes and decorate as desired.
YUM!!! Everyone loved these cupcakes. My most discerning testers are Ty and Jay and they definitely confirmed them as winners!
I will be away for awhile as I have to undergo some surgery but will be back as soon as I am able to. I thank the blogging community for their love and wonderful support! May God bless you all.