Tag Archives: cupcakes

Honeycomb chocolate cupcakes

This is my contribution to this month’s We Should Cocoa Challenge.  This month it is very exciting as the challenge is a year old (time flies!) and Chele wanted everyone to make a cake suitable for a first birthday.

My cupcakes are inspired by the wonderful blogs of both Chele and Choclette, the brilliant bloggers behind We Should Cocoa.  They have both recently featured honeycomb – Chele made Nigella’s Hokey Pokey and Choclette reviewed some very delicious looking honeycomb draped in Valrhona (drooling!).  I knew I had to make some honeycomb and soon.  Then I thought about a cupcake featuring honeycomb. When I was making them it seemed obvious that I needed to use spelt flour as I learned about spelt flour from Choclette.  The spelt flour has the consistency of wholemeal and so adds a bit more texture to the cupcake.  I happen to like this, but if you prefer yours in the traditional style then by all means use plain flour.

And, of course, if you are only one year old you don’t want a great big slab of cake (or you may want a big slab but your mummy won’t let you), so a cupcake is perfect.

Thanks to Chele and Choclette for a fabulous monthly challenge which has inspired me many times during the last year.

Before I divulge the recipe I have a few confessions to make.  I cooked the cupcakes with honeycomb sprinkled inside the batter, but all it did was dissolve and escape out of the top of the cakes so I wouldn’t bother with doing that again. My instructions for making the cupcakes will leave this bit out.  Also, when I was making the hokey pokey I reduced the amount of bicarb from the original recipe from 1½tsps to 1 tsp.

To make the cakes, first make the hokey pokey as described by Chele. Then make the cupcake batter as follows.

110g caster sugar
110g softened butter (unsalted)
pinch of salt
2 eggs
20g cocoa powder
1 heaped tsp instant coffee powder
100ml hot water
140g flour (spelt or plain)
1 tsp baking powder

Method
Dissolve the cocoa powder and the instant coffee in the hot water and allow to cool. Place all the ingredients into a large bowl and whisk until well combined.  Spoon into cupcake cases and bake in a preheated oven at 180°c, gas mark 4 or in the baking oven of the Aga for 12-15 minutes until cooked.  When you place a fingertip on top the cake should spring back. Remove the cakes in their cases to a wire rack to cool.

Make this chocolate frosting and top with honeycomb.  Make a cup of tea and enjoy.

 

Chocolate hazelnut cupcake with coffee buttercream

I think I could benefit from a cupcake decorating course 🙂

I made these the other day to have in the park on the walk home from school to celebrate the change in the weather we seem to have had in the last week or so.  Spring may actually have sprung.  Of course, though, because we had planned a picnic the English weather let us know that we were fools and the sun didn’t peek out of the clouds once.  It was a fairly cold picnic!  Oh well, the cupcakes were good.

I made these in muffin tins so that they are a fair-sized cupcake. You don’t see fairy cakes about much these days.  A fairy cake sized cake is sometimes exactly right to fill a hole.  So feel free to make these smaller.  If you are making them muffin sized they will make 12, so smaller might make 16- 20 I would say.

200g unsalted butter, softened
200g golden caster sugar
3 eggs
100g whole hazelnuts
100g plain (all-purpose) flour
25g good quality cocoa
2 tsp baking powder

For the frosting
100g butter, softened
200g icing sugar
3 tsp cool strong coffee, made from 3 tsp of instant coffee dissolved in  4 tsps of just boiled water
2 tbsp double cream

Method

Place the hazelnuts on a baking tray and place into a preheated oven at 200°c, gas mark 6 for about 4 minutes until they are lightly toasted.  Be careful, they soon burn. Pour them onto a clean tea towel and rub gently.  Most of the skins will come off, but leave some on as they add a good flavour.  Turn the oven down to 180°c, gas mark 4.

Put the hazelnuts into a food processor and whizz until they are large crumbs.  This adds a nice crunchiness to the cupcake.

Place the butter and sugar into a bowl and whisk until fluffy and pale.  Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat well with each addition. Gently stir in the hazelnuts.

Sift the flour, cocoa and baking powder over and fold in gently.

Place dessertspoonfuls of the mixture into the muffin cases in a muffin tin. They should be about three-quarters full. If you are using fairy cases then use a teaspoon to fill them three-quarters full.

Place in a preheated oven at 180°c, gas mark 4 or the Baking Oven of the Aga for about 20 – 25 minutes for the muffin sized cakes or 10-15 minutes for the fairy cake size.  They should look firm and feel springy to a gentle touch.

Leave them to cool in the tin for a minute or two and then lift out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the frosting, beat the butter in a bowl until soft, add the icing sugar and stir in gently at first.  If you beat it straight in you will end up with a fine layer of icing sugar dust all over the kitchen.  When it is starting to clump together start to whisk it until it is fluffy. Add the coffee and beat again. Add the cream and beat until all is combined.  Pipe over the cupcakes more artistically then I can manage.