Lemon Drizzle Cake

Luscious lemon drizzle cake. Fluffy buttermilk sponge cake soaked with a lemon sugar syrup and drizzled with a tangy lemon icing. Lemon dessert lovers, this cake recipe is for you! 

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Lemon drizzle cake is a British classic. I’ve grown up enjoying this cake and it holds a special place in my heart. The cake is very popular here where it’s sold at most bakeries, tearooms and is commonly found on many afternoon tea menus. As much as I love this cake there are many recipes out there that are a tad bit lacklustre. I’ve tried a good few and often found them too dry or simply lacking a real lemon flavour punch. But this recipe is the exact opposite. It’s fresh, summery, lemony and lip-smacking good!

You know a bake is going to be good when the recipe starts with a whole big block of butter. I have a few secrets of how to make the best lemon drizzle cake. Firstly, I like to add just a touch of buttermilk to my cake batter. The tanginess from the buttermilk works really well with the lemon flavour and it helps keep the cake moist and fluffy for several days.

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Another way I make my lemon drizzle cake differently, is I make my own lemon sugar. I’ve always liked vanilla or cinnamon sugar, but I would definitely say lemon sugar is my favourite out of the three. The sugar is super easy to make, all you have to do is rub the sugar and grated lemon zest with your fingertips. Doing this helps release the natural oil from the lemon and it really enhances the lemon flavour in your finished bake.

I’ve made this cake twice within the last week. With the first I thought I would freeze a few slices ready for when I fancied a piece of cake, but let’s just say those few slices of cake soon disappeared from the freezer and found their way onto my plate… 😉

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This gorgeous cake is delicious served with a scoop or two of ice cream, clotted cream, yoghurt and fresh berries  

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Joseph Joseph

Making this cake also gave me the opportunity to test out the latest Joseph Joseph samples from their new range. I have always been a fan of the Joseph Joseph kitchenware. I particularly like the Shake It™ which comes with an integrated rocking handle and this cleverly stimulates the process of tapping the sieve with your other hand. I used it to sift the dry ingredients (flour and baking powder) into my cake and also to sift the icing sugar when I made my drizzle icing to decorate the cake. Whiskle™ which isn’t just your ordinary whisk as it has a silicone bowl scraper attached, which helps make sure you get every single bit of the batter into your cake tin and it also helps save time on washing up! The Fin™ works in the same way as it makes sure you can get every last bit of your cake batter into the cake tin so there no wastage. The Glaze™ can be used to brush the lemon sugar syrup over the cake, but I’m also looking forward to using it when I make homemade pastry or even for brushing vegetables or meat with oil before roasting.

Ingredients:

Lemon Cake:

250g unsalted butter or margarine, softened

250g caster sugar

Zest from 2 large lemons

4 large free-range eggs, at room temperature

275g self-raising flour

1 teaspoon (6g) baking powder

100ml buttermilk

Juice of 1 large lemon

Lemon Sugar Syrup:

150g caster sugar

Juice of 1 large lemon

50ml water

Lemon Drizzle Icing: 

100g icing (confectioners’) sugar

2 tablespoons lemon juice (add more less depending on your preferred consistency)

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C / 160 Fan / 350°F / Gas Mark 4. Grease and line a 23cm springform cake tin with butter and parchment paper.
  2. In a small bowl combine the sugar and lemon zest. Using your fingertips, rub the sugar and zest together until combined.
  3. In a large mixing bowl beat together the softened butter/margarine with the lemon sugar until creamy and fluffy.
  4. Add the eggs one by one, beating well after each addition. Make sure you scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl to ensure all the ingredients are getting incorporated.
  5. Sift the flour and baking powder into the bowl and beat again until just a few lumps of flour remain. Finally, add the buttermilk and lemon juice and mix again until they’re combined into the batter fully.
  6. Spoon the batter into the cake tin and smooth the top with a spatula. Bake the cake for 50 minutes or until a cake tester when inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean without any uncooked batter remaining. All ovens are different so the cake may need 5-10 minutes longer in the oven. If the cake is colouring too much cover the top with a piece of tin/aluminium foil.
  7. Once the cake is baked completely, leave it on the side to cool for a few minutes. Meanwhile, make the lemon sugar syrup. Heat the sugar, lemon juice and water in a small saucepan. Stir until all the sugar has dissolved. Once dissolved, take off the heat. Poke holes all over the cake using a skewer, then pour the hot lemon sugar syrup all over the top of the cake. This step must be done when the cake is still warm. Now leave the cake to cool completely, then once cool remove from the tin.
  8. Make the lemon drizzle icing by sifting the icing sugar into a mixing bowl. Add the lemon juice and mix until you have a thick, runny icing. Adjust the consistency to your preferred liking with less or more lemon juice. Drizzle the cake with the icing.

Recipe Notes:

  • The cake will keep for up to 1 week stored in an airtight container.
  • The drizzle icing is optional, but I think it really makes this cake!
  • This lemon drizzle cake is delicious served on its own, but we especially love it with a scoop or two of vanilla ice cream, clotted cream, some yoghurt and fresh berries.

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Enjoy!

jess

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Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Carrot layer cake decorated with the ultimate fluffy cream cheese frosting. A cake recipe perfect for any occasion! 

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Admittedly, I have many favourite recipes. Carrot cake is one of my most beloved desserts. It’s moist, light, fluffy and each slice goes down a treat.

What I love most of all is how easy and simple this carrot cake recipe is to prepare. I also really adore the combination of spices, warming ground cinnamon, ginger and cloves work wonderfully, giving this cake its gorgeous unique flavour.

I think we can all agree that no other frosting suits carrot cake like a classic cream cheese frosting. So that’s what I went for to decorate my cake. Cream cheese frosting is usually my nemesis, as hard as I try I always seem to mess it up. Most of the time ending up with a runny and loose frosting with lumps of butter in! But I finally found a great cream cheese frosting, which has become my new go-to recipe! It’s ultra creamy and is made by simply whisking together cream cheese and mascarpone with icing sugar, vanilla and double cream. It turns out perfect each time.

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This recipe makes a big cake, which will serve about 10-12. If preferred, you could bake a batch of 24 cupcakes instead. I haven’t tried this yet, but baking time will differ.

This recipe is exactly how me and my taste testers like carrot cake. Plain and simple, without too many nuts in the cake, or any raisins or dried fruit added. It’s a definite favourite, and I cannot wait to make it again soon! Plus, we found the cake got better with age (I preferred the taste on day 2 and day 3), the flavour getting even stronger and the frosting stayed super creamy and fluffy.

I hope you love baking and eating this cake as much as we did!

Ingredients:

Cake –

450g (1 pound) carrots, finely grated

3 large free-range eggs, at room temperature

200g (1 cup) caster sugar

200g (1 packed cup) light brown sugar

355ml (1 1/2 cups) vegetable oil (or other flavourless oil such as canola)

80ml (1/3 cup) buttermilk

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

240g (2 cups) plain flour (all-purpose)

150g (1 cup) wholemeal flour

1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

Cream Cheese Frosting –

250g (8.8 ounces) full-fat cream cheese, softened

250g (8.8 ounces) mascarpone, softened

150g icing sugar, sifted

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

225ml double cream, chilled

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180C (160 Fan), 350 degrees. Line two 9 inch round cake tins with a circle of parchment paper in the bottom of each. Grease the sides of each tin with butter. Set to one side.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the grated carrot, eggs, sugars, oil, buttermilk and vanilla.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, salt and spices until combined.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, and fold until fully incorporated.
  5. Equally divide the cake batter between the cake tins. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean of any uncooked batter – cooking time will depend on your oven, so if in doubt, carry on baking the cake until the cake tester comes out clean. 
  6. Once the cakes are fully baked, allow to cool completely in the tins, then remove.
  7. For the frosting, in a large mixing bowl whisk the softened cream cheese and mascarpone until smooth. Add the vanilla extract and sifted icing sugar and whisk until combined. Now add the double cream bit by bit, and whisk the mixture until it has thickened – this will take approx. 1-2 minutes.
  8. To decorate, take one cake half and spread with a layer of the frosting. Place the second cake layer on top and sandwich the two halves together. Crumb coat the cake – this is done by using an off set palette knife to spread a very thin layer of the frosting around the cake. Chill the cake at this point for at least 30 minutes to allow the first layer of frosting to harden.
  9. Now using the remaining frosting, decorate and ice the cake. Finish decorating the cake with chopped pecans or walnuts, or your favourite sprinkles or sweets.
  10. Chill the cake until ready to serve. Then slice up and enjoy!

Carrot Cake recipe adapted very slightly from Faux Martha Frosting inspired by All Recipes UK 

Recipe Notes:

  • You can bake the cake, and wrap it in cling film and store for 2 days before you make the frosting and decorate it.
  • Keep the frosted cake covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

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Enjoy!

jess

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Apple Crumb Cake

Classic Apple Crumb Cake. Layers of fluffy vanilla cake, cinnamon sugar apples and crumbly streusel topping. 

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Happy Monday everyone! And happy November! I can’t believe this time next month we’ll all be getting ready for Christmas. Don’t you feel like this year has just flown by? I am excited to share lots of festive bakes this December on the blog. To be honest I think I’ve been planning all my Christmas recipes since the summer! Anyone else guilty of doing this? 😉

Today I’m sharing this gorgeous apple crumb cake. It would be perfect paired with hot mug of coffee or tea to warm you up on a chilly autumn or winter day.

The reason I decided to bake this apple crumb cake is because my grandparents kindly gave me an entire box full of apples from a relative’s apple tree (the perks of being a food blogger!), and I promised to bake something in return.

When I started brainstorming some possible recipes to use the apples in, two autumnal bakes in particular sprung straight to mind. Apple cake and apple crumble are two firm favourite desserts of my family. This apple crumb cake combines the two desserts and is everything a great crumb cake should be. The best part about this cake is the generous thick streusel topping. So if you’re like me and really like streusel, I know you’ll enjoy this recipe a lot!

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Prior to baking the cake I tossed the sliced apples in cinnamon and sugar. The cinnamon adds a warm spiced flavour and makes this cake perfect for the time of year. Brilliant served at room temperature, but I really think it would also be great served warm with a scoop vanilla ice cream, clotted cream or custard. Talk about indulgence!

Oh and don’t forget to drizzle over caramel or toffee sauce! The sauce takes this cake over the top! Slice it up and enjoy for breakfast or dessert, if you’re looking for a new autumn-inspired cake recipe, then look no further! Give this cake a try. You’re going to love it.

(Serves 10-12)

Ingredients:

Vanilla Cake:

4 eating apples (such as Granny Smith for the best texture)

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

200g (7 ounces) unsalted butter or margarine, softened

275g (1o ounces) caster sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

4 free-range eggs, at room temperature and lightly beaten

300g plain flour (all-purpose), sifted

Crumb Topping:

125g (4 ounces) plain flour

50g (2 ounces) light or dark brown sugar

60g (2 1/2 ounces) unsalted butter, melted

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 160°C (140 fan), Gas Mark 3. Grease the sides and base of a 20.5cm springform or loose-bottomed cake tin liberally with butter.
  2. Peel and core the apples, then cut into 1/2 cm (1/4 inch) slices. Place the apple slices in a bowl and toss together with the cinnamon and 2 tablespoons of the weighed out sugar. Set aside.
  3. To make the cake: Cream the butter, remaining sugar and vanilla until fluffy and pale in colour. Gradually add the beaten egg bit by bit, whisking well after each addition. Add the flour and fold through until combined. The mixture will be very thick, just be careful not to over mix.
  4. Spread the cake batter out into the prepared cake tin. Now layer the apple slices evenly across the top. Press them down very slightly into the cake batter – discard any remaining juices the sliced apples have released.
  5. To make the crumb topping: Combine all the ingredients listed (melted butter, brown sugar and flour), and mix with a spatula or spoon until the mixture resembles large, damp crumbs. Scatter the crumbs over the top of the cake.
  6. Bake for 1½ – 1¾ hours, or until cake tester comes out clean when inserted into the centre of the cake.
  7. Once fully baked, allow the cake to cool in the tin for 10-15 minutes, then remove from tin and leave to cool completely on a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature. Dust with icing sugar before serving.

Recipe adapted from here

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This is the autumn dessert you’ve all been waiting for! Enjoy!

jess

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Sticky Toffee Pudding

Sticky Toffee Pudding is a classic British dessert consisting of date sponge served with a sweet toffee sauce. Pudding doesn’t get much better than this! 

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I posted this recipe a while back when I had first started writing my blog. They’re one of my favourite desserts so I wanted to update and share the blog post once again because I love it so much! Sticky toffee pudding is a dessert you will make time and time again. I had previously baked these in celebration of Great British Pudding Week, my sister, Becky, took a look through my blog and requested I made these again over the weekend for a family dinner.

These gorgeous cakes are warm, sweet, sticky and drizzled with lots of homemade toffee sauce. Sticky toffee pudding is one of my most treasured childhood desserts. It’s got to that time of year where I think these kinds of comforting desserts should be eaten and enjoyed, especially desserts that come with lashings of warm homemade toffee sauce… 😉

Sticky toffee pudding is the epitome of food comfort on a cold afternoon or evening. The cake itself has to be eaten warm for you to experience its full glory and don’t skimp on the toffee sauce!

Ingredients:

Date Sponge –

175g pitted dates, chopped

300ml (1/2 pint) boiling water

1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

50g softened butter, plus extra for greasing

175g caster or granulated sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 large free-range eggs

210g self-raising flour, sifted

Toffee Sauce –

250g unsalted butter

300g soft brown sugar

400ml double cream

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(Makes 8)

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C / 160 Fan / 350°F / Gas Mark 4. Lightly grease the sides of 8 x 200ml pudding basins or ramekins and line each the base with a small circle of parchment paper. Place on a large baking tray and set aside.

2. Place the dates along with the boiling water and bicarbonate of soda into a small mixing bowl and put to one side. Meanwhile in a large mixing bowl cream together the butter and sugar with the vanilla until light and fluffy.

3. Add the eggs one by one and beat until combined. Now sift in the flour and gently fold into the mix. Finally stir through the date mixture until it’s completely incorporated.

4. Divide the mixture between the pudding moulds, making sure you only fill then 2/3 of the way full. Then place back on the tray and bake for 20-25 minutes or until a cake tester comes out completely clean.

5. Whilst the puddings are cooking, this is a good time to make the sauce. Put the butter and sugar into a pan and melt, bring up to the boil and then simmer for 5 minutes making sure you stir from time to time. Add the cream and stir through.

6. When the puddings are cooked, remove gently from the pudding moulds using a small palette knife or butter knife – remember to remove to the circle of parchment paper from the bottom. To serve, pour the sauce over each pudding and serve with pouring or whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream and some chopped walnuts or toasted pecans.

Recipe Notes:

  • You can bake the puddings in advance, just like I did. Follow through to the end of step 4, then remove the cakes from the moulds, then allow to cool and once cooled completely wrap in clingfilm (plastic wrap) or store in an airtight container for up to 2-3 days – warm up either in the microwave or oven. They can also be frozen once baked for up to a month. Just thaw in the refrigerator overnight and then bake for about 5-10 minutes until warmed through.

Recipe from Food Network UK

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I like to use any leftover toffee sauce to dip into churros, top pancakes or drizzle over ice cream!

Enjoy!

jess

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Lemon Cupcakes with Fresh Raspberry Buttercream

Light and buttery lemon-scented cupcakes topped with fresh raspberry buttercream.

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I’m super excited to share this cupcake recipe over on the Laura Ashley blog! The Great British Bake Off is currently airing on TV here in the UK, I am absolutely loving it! There really is nothing more British than tea and cake!

I am thrilled to have been chosen along with three other amazing bloggers (Aimee, Catherine and Sara) to take part in The Great Blogger Bake Off! I’m full aware most bloggers are going crazy over pumpkin recipes right now, but it is still the summer and I’m taking full advantage of that! I made these cupcakes way back in the middle of the summer, they went down a treat with everyone who tried one and are one of my favourite cupcake recipes.

THE GREAT BLOGGER BAKE OFF

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I love dusting each cupcake with a little bit of icing sugar – they look prettier that way! 

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For my recipe on the Laura Ashley blog, I decided to bake some summery cupcakes. I love cupcakes, so it seemed the obvious choice! Each cake is swirled with fresh raspberry buttercream. The buttercream is seriously addictive, so much so you could probably eat it by the spoonful straight from the mixing bowl – I’m always guilty of doing this!

I use a classic sponge cupcake, there is nothing more British than sponge cake! It’s a brilliant cake, light, fluffy and buttery. And perfect in so many ways!

I added the zest from one lemon to my cupcake batter, the lemon has a beautiful light flavour and it works amazingly with the tart raspberry buttercream. I use a brilliant vanilla buttercream base, but I’ve added some homemade raspberry puree to the mix. It naturally colours the buttercream, giving it a pretty pink colour!

These cupcakes would make a brilliant and pretty tasty addition to an afternoon tea party. Paired with my Easy Homemade Lemonade they would be the ultimate treat!

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For my recipe I received these absolutely gorgeous cupcake cases and toppers from the new collection! Along with the beautiful floral pastry guide worktop saver. I’m excited to make lots of pastry and roll out biscuits on this!

(Makes 12)

Ingredients:

Cupcakes:

150g (2/3 cup) unsalted butter, softened

150g (3/4 cup) caster or granulated sugar (superfine sugar)

3 free-range eggs, at room temperature

1 lemon, zest only

150g (1 and 1/4 cup) self-raising flour, sifted – be careful not to overmeasure – you can sub with 150g plain flour and 2 tsp baking powder

2-3 tbsp water or milk – water makes a lighter cake

Buttercream:

1 heaping cup (approx. 160g) fresh or frozen raspberries

150g (2/3 cup) unsalted butter, softened

300g (3 cups) icing sugar (confectioners’ sugar), sifted

1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)

2-3 tablespoon milk or cream

Method:

1. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C Fan / 200 °C / 400 °F / Gas Mark 6. Line a cupcake tin with 12 cupcake liners and set aside.

2. To make the cupcakes: In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment cream the butter, sugar and vanilla together until light in colour and very fluffy – this will take 5 minutes. Make sure you stop the mixer halfway through creaming and using a rubber spatula scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure even mixing.

3. Add eggs, one by one and mix to combine. Now fold in the flour – mix until just combined and no lumps of flour remain. Add the lemon zest along the milk or water to loosen the mixture slightly. Do not over mix!

4. Take an ice cream scoop and evenly distribute the cupcake batter between the cupcake liners. Bake in the preheated oven for 18-20 minutes or until a cake tester comes out completely clean of any uncooked batter. Leave to cool in the tin for 5-10 minutes, then when cool enough to touch remove from the tin and transport to a wire rack to finish cooling completely.

5. To make the buttercream: Blitz the raspberries in a food processor or blender until pureed. Then pass through a fine mesh sieve into a small saucepan. Heat gently and reduce by about half – this will take approx. 3-5 minutes. Pour the thickened raspberry puree into a bowl and chill until cold.

6. Once the cupcakes are fully cooled make the buttercream. Add the softened butter to a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Cream on a medium speed for about a minute just to soften. Add the sifted icing sugar and the vanilla extract and mix together on a low speed (this is to avoid a sugar cloud!) until the butter and sugar has combined. Now turn up the speed to medium and cream for another 5 minutes – remember to stop the mixer and scrape down the sides and bottom of the mixing bowl. Once the buttercream is fluffy add the raspberry puree and double cream, and mix on low speed for another minute to combine.

7. To decorate: Fit a large disposable piping bag with your favourite nozzle. Fill the piping bag with the frosting. Pipe even swirls on the top of each cupcake, then finish with a fresh raspberry and the beautiful cake toppers or any other decorations you like. Enjoy!

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jess

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Miss Honey Cake

Light and buttery honey cake infused with orange zest and vanilla. A gorgeous bake served with Greek yoghurt and fresh berries. 

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Matilda the Musical is running a bake off competition! We want you to get in the kitchen and bake something inspired by Matilda!

The prize for the competition is 2 tickets to Matilda the Musical, an afternoon tea at the Radisson Blu Edwardian and a night’s stay at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Mercer Street, London. To take part and have the chance to win, click here to go to the official site and find out more! #MatildaBakeOff

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It’s great fun to be involved in this baking campaign with Matilda the Musical! So when I brainstormed some recipe ideas inspired by Matilda, I had many ideas of recipes that were influenced by the story. Some favourites like chocolate fudge cake sprung to my mind, but it was my sister Becky who suggested I baked honey cake for this post. And if you’ve read Matilda you will know one of the main characters in the story is lovely Miss Honey. So a honey cake seemed the perfect bake to choose!

This honey cake is sweet, with a beautiful light flavour from the orange zest and vanilla. It’s delicious sliced up, drizzled with extra honey, dusted lightly with icing sugar, and served with Greek yogurt and berries. So good and this tasty recipe couldn’t be easier to make! Get baking and come along and join the Matilda Bake Off!

Ingredients:

Honey Orange Cake – 

170g/6oz (1/2 cup) clear honey

140g/5 oz unsalted butter, softened

85g/3oz light brown sugar

2 medium free-range eggs, lightly beaten + at room temperature

200g/7oz (1 and 2/3 cup) self-raising flour, sifted

1 teaspoon orange zest (zest from 1 large orange)

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Honey Sugar Glaze –

1 tablespoon honey

4 tablespoons (60g) icing (confectioners’) sugar

1-3 teaspoons hot water

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180C /160 Fan / 350F / Gas Mark 3. Line the base of a 18cm cake tin with parchment. Grease the base and sides of the tin well with butter.
  2. Measure the honey, butter, sugar and vanilla into a medium saucepan – add a tablespoon of water and heat gently until it has completely melted – don’t get the mixture too hot (not boiling).
  3. Remove from the heat and add the beaten egg, flour and orange zest, and whisk to combine – try not to over mix.
  4. Spoon into the cake tin and bake for 40-45 minutes or until nicely risen and lightly golden on top. Allow to cool for a few minutes, then when cool enough to touch turn out onto a wire rack. For the glaze, mix together the honey, sugar and water. Then brush/drizzle over the warm cake. Leave to cool completely.
  5. Slice up and serve with fresh berries and cream, or Greek yogurt. I also like to drizzle over extra honey and dust with icing sugar.

Recipe inspiration from here

Recipe Notes:

  • Don’t open the oven door until at least the 40 minute mark. Otherwise you may risk the cake sinking.
  • If your cake develops a crack in the centre, as mine did, it is completely fine! It just looks even more homemade and I love that rustic look.
  • Feel free to omit the orange zest if preferred. You could also add approx. 1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon or ginger to the cake batter as well.
  • Best eaten on the day of baking – but it will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up 3 days.
  • You can also warm a slice up and serve with custard, cream or ice cream.

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My new favourite cake recipe! Fluffy, light and with an amazing honey flavour in each bite! A must bake!

Enjoy!

jess

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Vanilla Cupcakes with Strawberry Buttercream

Moist vanilla cupcakes topped with fluffy and creamy strawberry buttercream frosting.

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Happy Friday! I’m back with yet another fantastic cupcake recipe ready to celebrate the weekend!

I shared my recipe for Perfect Vanilla Cupcakes last Friday and they went down a storm with you. It’s no secret that I’m pretty much obsessed with cupcakes. I have so much fun swirling the cupcakes with homemade frosting. Since perfecting a very simple, but pretty delicious vanilla buttercream I’ve been completely hooked on creating different frosting flavours.

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My vanilla cupcake recipe is both easy to make and tastes divine. You can top the cupcakes with any of your favourite frostings! The fluffy vanilla cupcakes suit decadent chocolate frosting, caramel frosting and now this gorgeous and fruity strawberry buttercream frosting.

This strawberry buttercream is just as easy as my vanilla buttercream is to make, but the only additional ingredient is freeze dried strawberries. I was browsing at my local bakeware shop and spotted a pot of freeze dried strawberries and thought it would be great idea to sprinkle into some vanilla frosting for a delicious strawberry hit!

Fresh fruit is great to use in some frosting recipes, but strawberries are quite watery in baked goods and would make a runny frosting, impossible to pipe – trust me, I’ve lost count of all the frosting fails I’ve had! So instead of wasting ingredients and time, I gave this method of a go and it worked amazingly, producing the BEST strawberry buttercream! I’ll let you be the judge of that, but the taste testers LOVED these! 😉

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The cupcakes not only look amazing, but they taste even better! The flavour of this strawberry buttercream reminds me a strawberry ice cream/gelato – it’s really good! It’s extremely light and with beautiful fresh flavour. The strawberry frosting really compliments the buttery sponge cake but it would also work well piped on these chocolate fudge cupcakes too!

Decorate in any way you like, they look perfect as they are but by any means add some sprinkles or top with fresh strawberries like I did!

(Makes 12 Cupcakes)

Ingredients:

Vanilla Cupcakes –

150g (2/3 cup) unsalted butter, softened

150g (3/4 cup) caster sugar or superfine sugar

3 large free range eggs, at room temperature

1 tsp vanilla extract

150g (1 and 1/4 cup) self-raising flour, sifted – be careful not to overmeasure – you can sub with 150g plain flour + 2 tsp baking powder

2-3 tbsp water or milk

Strawberry Buttercream Frosting –

150g (1/2 cup + 2 tbsp) unsalted butter, softened

300g (3 cups) icing sugar, sifted

1 tsp vanilla extract

16g (1 cup) freeze dried strawberry pieces

1-3 tablespoons double cream (heavy cream) or milk – cream will give a creamier textured buttercream

Method:

1. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C Fan / 200 °C / 400 °F / Gas Mark 6. Line a cupcake tin with 12 cupcake liners and set aside.

2. To make the cupcakes: In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment cream the butter, sugar and vanilla together until light in colour and very fluffy – this will take 5 minutes. Make sure you stop the mixer halfway through creaming and using a spatula scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure even mixing.

3. Add eggs, one by one and mix to combine. Now fold in the flour – mix until just combined and no lumps of flour remain. Now add the milk or water to loosen the mixture slightly. Do not over mix.

4. Take an ice cream scoop and evenly distribute the cupcake batter between the cupcake liners. Bake in the preheated oven for 18-20 minutes or until a cake tester comes out completely clean of any uncooked batter. Leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes, then when cool enough to touch remove from the tin and transport to a wire rack to finish cooling completely.

5. To make the strawberry frosting & decorate: Cream the butter on a medium speed for a minute to soften. Add half the icing sugar and mix until it’s fully combined. Now stop the mixer and add the remaining icing sugar along with the vanilla and the freeze dried strawberries (16g / 1 cup) and beat on medium speed for 5-7 minutes until pale in colour and fluffy. Stop the mixer halfway through and scrape down the bottom and sides of the mixing bowl. Finally, add the cream or milk and mix for another minute until fluffy. Once the buttercream is mixed, fit a disposable piping bag with your favourite nozzle and fill the bag with the frosting.

Pipe swirls of frosting onto each cupcake, then finish with sprinkles or fresh strawberries. Store the iced cupcakes in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

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Enjoy!

jess

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