Oh and a Blog launch!!
This is where the journey begins, and who knows where it goes from here. One thing I do know for sure, is that there will be passion, there will be love, and by goodness, there will be CAKE!!
And what better way for us to kick off this beautifully exciting journey, than with these bakery style vanilla cupcakes? And just in time for Easter!
Easter was always a very special occasion for me as a child, and I have the fondest memories. In fact, Easter was by far my most exciting holiday until about the age of… um…26, even over and above Christmas, which has undoubtedly taken over as my most favourite time of the year.
I think it had something to do with the challenge in finding the hidden Easter eggs, I loved that it wasn’t just as easy as getting out of bed, and seeing them there, I had to actually work to find them. Or perhaps it was the excitement around waking up just as the sun was rising to go out hunting with our little Easter baskets. Maybe it was the competitor in me, wanting to find the most eggs or the biggest one’s, even though my younger sister and I would get exactly the same eggs divided between us in the end.
I remember as we grew older, and our friends began to talk, our parents would grow increasingly inventive when it came to keeping us believing in the Easter Bunny. One year, my Dad took our dog and dipped his paws into the mud, and placed them on the outside of the window so they would appear like bunny paw prints. That must go down as one of the most memorable and captivating moments of my childhood. Needless to say, I was beyond devastated when I learnt the truth, like so many of us are.
However, the inspiration and love that comes from this holiday still lives on inside me, and I just find other ways of expressing it now as an adult. One of those ways is of course through my love for baking. So I decided to make these really simple, yet delicious cupcakes for some family and friends in the lead up to Easter weekend.
These cupcakes are sure to satisfy both adult and child alike, or the child in your adult for that matter. I’ve tried and tested so many recipes for vanilla cake over the years, and continue to do so. But what I can tell you, with the backing from my family, is that this recipe, which I have used many times over, is a winner. The cake should turn out light and fluffy but still moist, and not too sweet. And of course paired with this delicious white chocolate frosting, it’s the perfect indulgent treat with a cup of tea or coffee, and you may even find yourself going back for a second soon after the first. This recipe can be used for birthdays or any occasion really, and could also be used to make a layered cake if you so choose. It doesn’t need to be complicated to be deliciously satisfying!
Bakery Style Vanilla Cupcakes with White Chocolate Frosting
Makes 24 Cupcakes
3 cups all-purpose or cake flour
3t baking powder
1 ¼ cups salted butter (softened)
1 ½ cups caster sugar (granulated)
6 large egg whites
2t vanilla essence
1t vanilla extract
1 ¼ cups full cream plain yoghurt
¼ cup whole milk
1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C, and line cupcake trays with paper cups.
2. In a large bowl, sift the flour, baking powder and salt, whisk to mix well and set aside.
3. In a bowl fitted to an electric mixer, beat the butter until light in colour (about 4 minutes).
4. Add the sugar to the butter in small amounts, mixing well. Once all the sugar is added, beat on a high speed until the mixture turns pale and fluffy (about 5 minutes).
5. Crack your egg whites into a bowl, then add the vanilla essence and extract to the egg whites, and whisk until frothy.
6. Add the egg white mixture to the butter mixture, and beat on a medium speed until incorporated and smooth. Remember to scrape down the sides of the bowl to incorporate all the mixture.
7. Alternate adding the flour and yoghurt to the butter mixture in three parts, mixing on a low speed after each addition. If you find the mixture is too thick, add the milk at the end and mix slowly to incorporate, again remembering to scrape down the sides.
8. Scoop the mixture into the paper cups no more than 2/3 of the way full.
9. Bake for approximately 15 to 20 minutes (ovens vary so watch when the top of the cupcakes begin to turn golden), testing the centre of a cupcake with a cake tester or toothpick to ensure it comes out clean.
10. Remove the cupcakes from the oven and allow them to cool for 10 minutes, before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
1 ½ cups salted butter (softened)
2 cups powdered sugar
200g white chocolate (chopped)
1. In a bowl fitted to an electric mixer, beat the butter on a high speed until it turns pale (approximately 4 minutes).
2. Sift the powdered sugar into a separate bowl. (This ensures a smoother consistency in the frosting).
3. Place the white chocolate into a bowl, and place that bowl on top of a pot of boiling water. Ensure the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl. Stir the chocolate until melted and smooth, then remove from the pot and allow to cool for about 2 minutes.
4. Add the white chocolate mixture to the butter and combine.
5. Add the powdered sugar to the butter mixture in small amounts, combining after each addition.
6. If the frosting is too soft, place in the fridge to cool for approximately 10 minutes, or until it begins to stiffen.
7. Frost the cupcakes with a palette knife, and decorate as desired.
I honestly couldn’t be more happy to have finally launched my blog, and I hope you’ll follow me on social media for post updates, subscribe to my site, and or come back and visit soon. There is so much exciting stuff to come in this creative space!
Until next time…
We got stuck for just a moment.
And in that instant, the night rolled in, with the mist firmly by her side, a formidable pair so undeniably exquisite in their purpose.
And together, they took you away from me.
As if they were waiting for our lights to be so dim.
And when I woke, you were gone.
I came to look for you, I came every day.
I thought I had found you, all eyes on my pain.
I tried to take you with me, to carry you from the shards of bark that surrounded your fragile frame. I kissed your pale face, over and over, and over again in the hope that you would wake from your eternal slumber, and fly with me once more. Fly with me over glass lakes and copper fields.
Let the trees whisper our names as we pass over them with such rapture!
But it was not you, and all I was left with was foolishness, and a flickering light.
And still, I came every day.