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Gingerbread cupcakes

You'll find yourself tempted by these dainty bites

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Ingredients (makes 8-10 cupcakes)

  • 175g/6oz butter, softened
  • 175g/6oz caster sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 350g/11oz plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1⁄2 tsp allspice
  • 1⁄2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1⁄2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1⁄2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • Pinch of salt
  • 100ml/4fl oz milk
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 1 drop of vanilla extract

For the topping

  • 150g/5oz butter, softened
  • 100g icing sugar
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • Pinch of ground ginger
  • Candied orange peel (optional)

Method

Preheat the oven to 170°C, 325°F, Gas 3, and line a cupcake tin or Yorkshire pudding tin with paper cupcake cases.

Cream together the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl. When light and fluffy, gradually add the eggs, one by one, making sure you keep the mix moving all the time – this is important. The cake will look as though it has split but don’t worry, that’s normal.

Sift together all the dry ingredients and carefully fold them into the mixture. Add the milk, orange zest and vanilla. Stir well then fold the flour in gently.

When everything is combined, spoon a tablespoon of the mixture into each paper case. Bake for 12-15 minutes then remove from the oven and leave to cool while you make the butter icing.

Cream the softened butter and icing sugar with a wooden spoon until they are smooth. Add the orange zest and spread over the top of the cooled cakes.

Top each one with a pinch of ground ginger and some candied peel if you like, or with decorations of your choice.



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