Wednesday, 29 August 2012

The Birthday Cupcakes

So I turned 20 this Sunday (yay for me), and I got the best present ever from my mum:

A Kenwood kMix Food Mixer.
It made me so happy, I was nearly jumping up and down with joy. And of course, I had to use it straight away. So I got to baking some birthday cupcakes.

Just a simple chocolate cake, with some white chocolate icing, but they were so yummy.
And it was even better knowing that I had used my new toy to make them. I love making cakes the usual way, but using the mixer made the whole process a lot easier. Although it was a weird feeling being able to move around the kitchen getting bits and bobs while the mixer was on. Weird but oddly satisfying.
Maybe I'll be doing a lot more baking...

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Chocolate Orange Cupcakes

So I picked up my cousin from work this afternoon, due to the mini storm we had, and she'd had a really bad day, meaning she was a bit grumpy. Now it's kind of an unwritten rule in our house, that if someone needs cheering up, give them food, preferably cake. So when I asked her 'Shall I make cupcakes?', of course her answer was a massive 'YES!'

So all the way home, I was thinking about which flavour I was going to do this time. When my cousin said she wanted chocolate, I thought 'perfect, I haven't had chocolate in a long time'. And then I remembered that last week I had bought some orange extract. And hey presto, chocolate orange cupcakes!

As soon as I got home, I got straight to work. and I was right to use the orange flavouring, it was just gorgeous, giving off such a lovely smell when mixed with the chocolate. It reminded my cousin and I of Terry's chocolate orange, which immediately made her excited. And once they were done and decorated, we just had to eat them. And the unexpected had happened. They weren't like ordinary cupcakes. They were like brownies. And that just made everything better!

Makes 12

120g self raising flower
140g caster sugar
1tsp baking powder
40g unsalted butter
50g dark chocolate, melted
1 egg
125ml milk
1tsp orange extract

225g unsalted butter
500g icing sugar
50g dark chocolate, melted
1tsp orange extract

Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 3/170C, and line a cupcake tray with cases.
Cream the butter and caster sugar, until pale and fluffy, and then add the egg and orange extract, and mix. 
(I tend to use a wooden spoon first, and then do the rest with a whisk, to get the mixture as fluffy as possible.)
Add about a third of the flour, mix, and then add a third of the milk, mixing again. Repeat the process until all the flour and milk has been used up. Don't forget to add the baking powder as well.
Then add the melted chocolate, and stir until thoroughly mixed in.
Fill the cupcake liners with the cake mix, and put into the oven, for 15-20 minutes.
Once done, take out of the oven, but leave the cakes in the tray for about 10 minutes, before transferring to a cooling rack.

While the cakes are cooling, prepare the icing.
Put the butter into a bowl, and sieve some of the icing sugar into the bowl. Cream the butter and the sugar, before adding some more icing sugar. Carry on until the icing sugar is gone.
Then add the melted chocolate and orange extract, and stir.

When the cakes are cool, pipe the buttercream onto the cakes.
Then all that's left to do is to make a cup of tea, and eat!

Monday, 13 August 2012

Let's Begin

Welcome! After weeks of perusing through blogs, reading other people's posts about baking and crafts that left me inspired for days, I finally gave in to the idea of setting up my own blog. I hope that you all enjoy reading my posts, although what I really want is to give you all possible ideas for your baking.

This blog won't just be about cakes and other baking goods, although that will most likely be the subject of the majority of these posts. I'll try to talk about other things important to my life, which means that I might (scratch that, I will) even talk about my favourite teas, although occasionally I manage to work up the courage to try a new blend, so I may end up giving recommendations as well. 

All that's left is to say that I hope you will enjoy my blog :)

Sophie x