Tag Archives: frosting

Sugar and spice, and all things nice…

12 Nov

Soooo, given that this blog is called Cupcakes and Glitter, I thought I had better get on with making some cupcakes with glitter..!

I was a bit bored this evening, and decided to dig out a recipe that I’ve had my eye on for a while now – Sticky toffee cupcakes with salted caramel frosting. However, I didn’t have any dates, and I couldn’t be faffed to go out and get some so I decided that I would adapt the recipe slightly to use up some apples I had instead. I peeled and chopped a couple of apples and then cooked them gently over a low heat for ten minute or so with some mixed spice and some dark brown sugar. I also added 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon to the cake batter, used soft light brown sugar instead of muscavado and just made plain caramel frosting. I found the recipe to be easily adaptable, and I had no problems with anything.

Cupcakes + day 1 of a new diet don’t really mix, unfortunately, but I had a tiny bite of the one I gave to my chief tester Mr H, and we both really liked it. The apple and the cinnamon made the cupcake every so slightly muffin-y almost. I decided that I would tart the cakes up a bit at the end, so I tried making some spun sugar to decorate them with (inspired by the wonderful Sprinkle Bakes) and I’d like to think I did pretty well for a first attempt! It was a lot easier than I thought it would be, so give it a go. And of course, there was glitter (though not that visible in the rubbish iPhone pics…)

Here’s the original recipe – I can’t wait to try it out!

Sticky toffee cupcakes with salted cream caramel


* 180 g dates, pitted and chopped
* 1 tsp vanilla extract
* 180 g self-raising flour
* 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
* 80 g unsalted butter
* 150 g muscovado sugar
* 2 eggs, lightly beaten

For the caramel

* 125 g caster sugar
* 80 ml double cream
* 1/2 tsp salt
* 1 tsp vanilla extract

For the buttercream

* 1/2 tsp salt
* 1 tsp vanilla extract
* 160 g butter
* 200 g icing sugar


1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC/fan170ºC/gas 4.

2. Place the paper cases into a 12 hole cupcake tin.

3. In a heatproof bowl, pour 180ml boiling water over the dates and leave to soak for 20 minutes. with a fork, gently break up the dates and stir in the vanilla.

4. Sift the flour and bicarbonate of soda into a bowl and set aside. Cream together the butter and sugar for a good 5 minutes until very light and fluffy.  Add the eggs gradually, beating between each addition, slipping in 1 tbsp flour about halfway through to prevent curdling.
Lastly, fold in the remaining flour and then the date mixture.

5. Spoon into the cupcake cases and bake for 15–20 minutes (the tops should spring back when pressed with a finger). Remove and leave to cool.

6. For the caramel –  Dissolve the sugar and 60ml water in a small, solid-based pan over a gentle heat, then increase the heat to a boil. Wait a few minutes, leaving the pan undisturbed but watching it like a hawk and, as soon as it changes to a wonderful caramel colour (like strong tea) and is thicker, remove immediately from the heat, stand well back, and add the cream.

7. Be very careful as it is searing hot and it may splatter a little. It will react, or ‘seize’, and you may think it has gone wrong; it hasn’t. Keep stirring, adding the salt and the vanilla. Leave until stone cold.

8. If using shop bought caramel sauce, such as dulce de leche simply mix it with the salt and vanilla.

9. For the buttercream –  Cream the butter and icing sugar for at least 5 minutes with an electric mixer and add the caramel or the dulce de leche.

10. Put the buttercream into the piping bag fitted with the star nozzle and pipe it on to the cakes, or spread it on with a palette knife.

11. Decorate  however you like (that’s me, not Good Food!)

All packaged up to be sent off with Rich to take to work, so I can’t be tempted AND I get brownie points for being a good wife! Genius!


Cupcakes and the City

15 Oct

My most recent batch of cupcakes were for the Rock My Wedding meet in London, last Friday, for any readers and sponsors. For those of you who don’t know, Rock My Wedding is literally the BEST. SITE. EVER. for anything wedding related. I follow it religiously! I thought I would be cheeky and ask if they would like any cupcakes for the event, and to my surprise they said yes!

Cue much excitement, and then head scratching as I pondered what cupcakes to make! In the end, and after much debate with Mr H (who pointed out that I had to get 50 odd cupcakes up to London, and bake them all in one day, and should therefore probably keep it simple..) I decided that I would make vanilla cupcakes with vanilla buttercream frosting, and lemon cupcakes with lemon buttercream frosting, and then fancy them up with some gorgeous decoration.

At the last minute, I decided to make the lemon frosting almond-lemon, with the addition of sweet almond extract, something I’ve never tried before. The almond flavour really complemented the cake, and the lemon juice and zest in the frosting gave it a wonderful lift and stopped the topping from being too sweet.

For the vanilla cupcakes, I decided to decorate them in the RMW colours and style – baby blue polka dot! I used baby blue polka dot cases, and piped swirls of white frosting with blue edges, and topped with pearl dragees.

For the lemon cupcakes, I wanted to do something really bright and fun. I used purple cases and coloured the icing a pale yellow. I then topped them with rainbow sequins and ‘disco violet’ edible glitter. Be warned, it gets everywhere!!

I was so pleased with how they turned out. Luckily my brother Andrew agreed to be my assistant for the day, and very kindly helped me negotiate the London Underground with 6 boxes of cakes!

Definitely worth the effort, as they went down a treat. I love baking for others – it’s the best feeling seeing someone enjoy something you’ve made.

Until next time!

Rach xxx

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