Saturday was Jan’s birthday, and on Sunday I felt like baking… perfect timing for Jan to be able to take something in for his colleagues today. I didn’t want to make a full on cake, so I decided on chocolate cupcakes using a recipe that I’ve had for ages and is really easy to follow. I found the original recipe on BBC Food years ago, but I can’t provide you with a link because it doesn’t seem to be on there any more. Buuut I’ve adapted the recipe to suit my own purposes over the years, which means it’s mine now and posting it here without a link won’t be breaking any copyright laws, right? Right? Here’s the recipe:
For the cupcakes:
220 g caster sugar
220g self-raising flour OR 220g plain flour plus 1.5 teaspoons baking powder (plus half a tsp of bicarbonate of soda, if you have it)
4 eggs, beaten (mine were medium, but I’ve used large before)
15g cocoa powder
30g chocolate chips
A few drops of vanilla extract
For the frosting:
125g soft butter
210g icing sugar, sifted (the sifting is important or the frosting will have lumps of icing sugar in)
125g plain chocolate
1 tsp cocoa powder
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
2. Add the cocoa powder and blend it into the other ingredients, then stir in the chocolate chips and vanilla extract.
3. Add the eggs and stir well (don’t worry if it looks a bit lumpy at this stage).
4. Gradually fold in the flour until you’re left with a thick paste that looks a bit like chocolate mousse.
5. Place heaped teaspoons of the mixture into cupcake cases in a bun tray and bake for around 15 minutes until risen and bouncy when touched. The mixture makes around 24-26 cupcakes, depending on how much of the mixture you eat before it makes it to the oven (what? I know I’m not the only one that does that…). Once the cupcakes are baked, leave then to cool while you make your frosting.
6. Melt the plain chocolate in a bowl over a pan of water (or in the microwave if you have such a thing…)
7. While the chocolate is melting, cream together the butter and icing sugar.
8. Add the melted chocolate the sugar and butter and stir everything together well.
9. Add a teaspoon of cocoa powder and stir until all the powder is properly blended in.
10. Place a teaspoon of the frosting on each cupcake and spread it with a knife (or pipe it on if you want your icing to end up looking better than mine… I preferred the less washing up option!).
11. You can either leave the cupcakes as they are now or decorate them as you see fit. Apparantly, I saw fit to sprinkle stars on mine in an incredibly haphazard manner. I could claim it’s supposed to be artistic but we all know it was sheer laziness…
12. Leave the frosting to cool/set for a bit then enjoy your cupcakes!