Almond and Chocolate Cupcakes

Makes about 12

1 1/4 cups self-raising flour
2/3 cup caster sugar
125g unsalted butter, softened
3 eggs
1/3 cup milk
2 tsp vanilla essence
1/2 cup almond meal
1/2 cup white chocolate bits
2 tubs purchased vanilla frosting
2 cups pure icing sugar, sifted
Assorted food colourings
Purchased icing flowers

1. Preheat oven to 180°C. Line a 12-hole standard muffin tin with patty cases. Put flour, sugar, butter, eggs, milk and essence in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat on medium for 3-4 minutes or until thickened and pale in colour. Fold through almond meal and chocolate.
2. Half fill each patty case with mixture. Bake for 12-15 minutes. Remove from oven and stand on a wire rack to cool before lifting out. Decorate with frosting and flowers.
3. To decorate: Put the frosting in a large mixing bowl, add the icing sugar and beat with a wooden spoon until frosting holds its shape. Divide frosting into 5 small bowls and add a few drops of a food colouring to each bowl and mix until even in colour. If the tops of the cakes have formed a peak when baking trim with a small serrated knife to even out. Spread each cake with your chosen icing colour. Fill an icing bag fitted with a shell tube and pipe a decorative edge around each cake. Place an icing flower in the centre. Stand for 30 minutes to set.

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