Mint Choc-Chip Cupcakes
This one was a spur of the moment decision but I did not regret it!
Why didn't I think of this? I love the mint-chocolate ice-cream flavour from Thorntons! So, I'm glad I found this in the pages of 'Lola's Forever' book by Lola's Cupcakes. Enjoy!
Ps: I had no peppermint extract so I made a strong small cup of peppermint tea.
Makes: 12-20 cupcakes
Preparation time: 25-30 minutes
Baking time: 15-25 minutes
50g unsweetened Cocoa powder
175g Self-raising Flour
190g Light brown Sugar
90ml Whole Milk (I used Almond milk)
1 teaspoon Peppermint Extract (I used 3 teaspoons of my tea)
175ml Sunflower Oil
75g Dark/Semi-sweet Chocolate chips
75g Unsalted Butter
1/2 teaspoon Peppermint Extract ( I used 2 teaspoons of my tea)
150g Icing Suga
2 tablespoons Whole Milk (I used Almond Milk)
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon Mint Green food colouring
1) Preheat the oven to 180oC/ Fan 160oC/ 350oF/ Gas 4. Sift the cocoa powder and flour into a bowl and set aside.
2) Place the eggs and sugar into a bowl and beat for 1-2 minutes until light and fluffy. Combine the milk, peppermint extract and oil before slowly adding to the egg mixture until just combined.
3) Slowly add the sifted dry ingredients. Scrape down the side of the bowl with a rubber spatula and mix until it is smooth - do not overmix.
4) Fold in the chocolate chips, until evenly distributed.
5) Using an ice cream scoop, divide the mixture between the muffin cases - fill till two-thirds full.
6) Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes until well risen and skewer inserted into a cake comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
1) Place the butter into a bowl and beat until soft and fluffy. Add the mint extract and mix again. Sift in half the icing sugar and mix at a low speed until incorporated.
2) Add the second half of the sugar and mix again.
3) Add the milk, one tablespoon at a time, and mix until it is light and fluffy. If too stiff, add some more milk.
4) Add your green food colouring, in half batches and mix to your desired shade.
5) Either spoon the buttercream into a piping bag and pipe a swirl onto each cupcake or spread the buttercream onto each cake using a palette knife.
6) Decorate the cupcakes with chopped dark chocolate sprinkles and you can add a chocolate truffle each for a more glamour! I'm not so posh so I used Maltesers.
I know, it's been a long time since I uploaded one but I have been baking!
Back with a bang! I do hope you enjoy this...the folks at work did!
Apple Crumble Cupcake
This one is from Lola's Forever recipe book but is tweaked down with less sugar. Enjoy! These went down a storm!
175g self-raising Flour
1 1/2 teaspoons ground Cinnamon
3/4 teaspoons Baking powder
125g unsalted Butter
150g Soft light Brown sugar (200g originally)
1/2 teaspoons Royal Gala Apples (Granny Smith) peeled and finely chopped
125g Plain flour
25g Ground Almonds
50g Caster/granulated sugar
100g cold Butter, cubed
Cream Cheese Icing
1/2 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of Vanilla extract (bean paste)
100g Icing sugar
200g Low-fat Cream cheese (Full-fat)
1) Preheat the oven to 180oC/ 160oC Fan/350oF/Gas Mark 4. Line a
large baking sheet with baking parchment and a muffin pan with 12
2) Start by making the crumble topping. Place the flour, almonds and
sugar into a bowl. Using your fingertips, rub the cold butter into the dry
ingredients until it resembles breadcrumbs,
3) Spread the crumble mix onto the lined baking sheet and bake for 15
minutes, using a spatula every 5 minutes for the crumble to bake
evenly. Once golden brown, remove from oven to cool. This mixture
will keep in an airtight container for up to 10 days.
4) For the cupcakes, place the butter, sugar and vanilla extract into a bowl
and mix until light and fluffy.
5) Add the eggs, one at a time until fully mixed in. Slowly add the sifted
flour, cinnamon and baking powder. Scrape down the sides of the bowl
with a rubber spatula until the mixture is smooth.
6) Add the sour cream, mix and add the chopped apples. Do not over-mix.
7) Using an ice cream scoop, divide the mixture between the muffin cases
filling to almost 2/3rds full. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes until
well-risen and a skewer inserted into the cakes comes out clean.
Cream Cheese Icing
1) Beat the butter until smooth and soft and mix in the cinnamon and
2) Add the icing sugar in 2 halves, mixing in between. Add the cream
cheese and mix until smooth and glossy. Do not over-mix.
3) Spread the icing over the cooled cakes using a palette knife or a metal
spatula. You could choose instead to spoon it into a piping bag fitted
with a large star shaped nozzle and pipe a swirl on each cupcake.
4) Decorate each cake with a small sprinkling of the baked crumble mix
and simply enjoy!
I got rave reviews for this but also had lots of crumble mixture left over! It really is moreish and it's got apples in it - surely one of your five a day?! No? Oh well!
Recipe | Blueberry Cupcakes
I've been gone for a hot minute! Here's a much-enjoyed recipe from the Lola's Forever recipe book of Lola's Cupcakes. Original recipe proportions of sugar and other changes in brackets. I used the cream cheese frosting proportions from the Red Velvet and Carrot cupcakes.
200g Self-raising flour
1 teaspoon Baking powder
175g unsalted Butter
180g Soft light brown sugar (recipe: 250g caster/granulated sugar)
1 1/2 teaspoons Vanilla essence (recipe: vanilla bean paste)
175ml Soured Cream
Cream cheese icing
1 teaspoon Caster/granulated sugar
60g unsalted Butter
1 teaspoon Vanilla essence (recipe: vanilla bean paste)
200g Icing sugar
400g cream cheese (Philadelphia light)
36 fresh blueberries
1) Preheat the oven to 180oC/ Fan 160oC/ Gas Mark 4 and line a muffin
pan with 12 muffin cases.
2) Sift the flour and baking powder in a bowl and set aside. Mix the butter
and sugar in a separate bowl and beat until light and fluffy. Scrape
down the sides and mix again.
3) Add the vanilla bean past and mix. Slowly add in the eggs, one at a
4) Add the dry ingredients and mix slowly until combined. Once you have
a smooth batter, add the soured cream - do not over-mix.
5) Using an ice cream scoop, divide the mixture between the muffin cases,
filling to almost 2/3rds full. Gently push four blueberries into the batter
of each cake.
6) Bake in pre-heated oven for 20-25 minutes, until well-risen and a
skewer insert into the cakes comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack to
Cream cheese icing
1) Simmer the blueberries in a saucepan with the caster/granulated sugar
and 1 teaspoon of water for 10 minutes, then blend until smooth. Set
aside to cool.
2) Beat the butter in a bowl until soft and smooth then add vanilla essence
and sift in the icing sugar in 2 batches.
3) Add the cream cheese and mix until smooth and glossy. Do not
over-mix. Add the cooled blueberry puree and slowly combine (you
can leave a small blueberry ripple).
4) Spoon the icing into a piping or pastry bag with a large star nozzle tip
and pipe a swirl onto each cupcake.
5) Alternatively, spread the icing onto each cupcake using a palette knie
or metal spatula
6) Finish each cupcake with 3 blueberries on top.
Enjoy, ladies and gents! I must tell you, the folks at work loved this. The all-pervading blueberry scent as you open the carrying box is amazing! It is creamy but bursting with blueberry tastiness. And the blueberry puree is an idea for a healthier option beside blueberry pancakes (with a dollop of natural yoghurt perhaps?). Let me know how you get on with this one!
Red Velvet Cupcakes 1
This was a wonderful surprise gift from a lovely friend, Nyla aka Kulchibeauty on YouTube (check out her hair and make-up videos - they are amazing!). She got me two great big books for more inspiration! Yay!
So here is one I tried last week. I have made red velvet several times this year and I have used other recipes. I will share those as we proceed in the year and give my verdict on my favourite. This recipe is from Lola's Forever by my Namesake bakery, Lola's cupcakes. They also feature a gluten-free one which I will also try (since I have the rice flour already!). I tweaked the recipe to reduce the sugar content (tweaks in pink). I used my own favourite cream cheese icing recipe (75g unsalted butter, 125g Icing sugar and 250g of medium-fat (Philadelphia light) Cream Cheese.
So without much further ado....
Prep time: 20 minutes
Baking time: 18-22 minutes
Makes 12 - 15 cupcakes
110g unsalted Butter
160g Caster/ granulated Sugar (80g light brown + 70g caster sugar)
1 teaspoon Vanilla bean paste (1 teaspoon vanilla extract)
1/2 teaspoon Red food colouring paste (2 tspns Cochineal red food colour)
3 tablespoons Sunflower oil
3/4 tablespoons White wine vinegar/freshly squeezed lemon juice (red wine vinegar)
35g dark/bittersweet Chocolate, melted
190g Plain/all-purpose Flour
1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda/ Baking soda
3/4 tablespoon Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
70mls Single/light Cream ( sour cream)
70mls Full-fat/ Whole milk (Almond milk)
35g Ground Almonds
Cream Cheese Icing
1 teaspoon Vanilla bean paste
200g Icing/confectioner's sugar
400g Full-fat Cream Cheese
1) Preheat oven to 180oC/ 160oC Fan/350oF/Gas 4. Line a muffin pan
with 12 muffin cases.
2) Mix the butter, sugar and vanilla bean paste in a large bowl until light
and fluffy. Add the food colouring paste and the egg, mixing slowly until
3) Beat in the oil and vinegar followed by the melted chocolate.
4) Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda and cocoa powder together in
a separate bowl. Add the dry ingredients to the batter, a little at a time,
alternating with the cream and milk until you have a soft batter.
5) Finally add the ground almonds and mix until a smooth and uniform
colour is achieved. Scrape down the side of the bowl with a rubber
spatula and mix again. Do not over-mix.
6) Using an ice-cream scoop, divide the mixture between the muffin cases,
filling them to almost 2/3rd full. Bake in the preheated oven for 18-22
minutes or until risen and a skewer inserted into the cakes comes out
7) Transfer to a wire rack for cooling.
1) Place the butter in a large bowl and beat until soft and smooth (electric
whisk, by hand or in a stand mixer).
2) Add the vanilla bean past and sift in the icing sugar.
3) Add the cream cheese and beat (medium to high speed for 30 seconds)
until smooth and glossy). Do not over-mix.
4) Spoon the icing into a piping/pastry bag (fitted with a large star
nozzle/tip) and pipe a swirl onto each cupcake. Alternatively, spread
the cream icing onto each cupcake using a palette knife or metal
5) Crumble by hand or blitz one un-iced cupcake in a food processor and
sprinke the red velvet cake crumbs onto each cupcake to decorate. You
can store left-overs in an airtight container but allow it to dry out first.
Ps: there are no cupcakes left! Even my younger brother ate two by himself (he's usually a hard sell!).
Recipe | Apricot Tea Bread
I tried this tea bread out because I was curious to see what adding apricots would do to a bread. It's absolutely lovely! And I'm not the only taster to attest to that! Better still, it came from a lower calorie cookbook!
Calories per serving 230
Prep time 25 minutes , plus soaking
Cooking time 1 hour
100g Ready-to-eat Dried apricots, chopped
100g Raisins (I used currants as I had no raisins to hand)
130g Soft Light brown sugar
300mls Hot strong tea
275g Self-raising flour
1 Teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda
1 Teaspoon Ground cinnamon
1 egg, beaten
1) Place the dried fruit and sugar in a mixing bowl and add hot tea before
mixing. Leave to soak in for 4 hours or overnight. Meanwhile,
pre-heat the oven 160oC (325 F and gas mark3.
2) Mix the flour, soda and cinnamon together and pour in the soaked fruits
and beaten egg before stirring together.
3) Spoon this into a greased and lined 1kg (2lb) loaf tin. Level the surface
and bake in the centre of a pre-heated oven for 1 hour or until well
risen, the top has cracked and a skewer inserted into the centre comes
4) Leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before loosening the edges and
lifting out with the lining paper. Transfer to a wire rack and peel off the
lining paper to cool completely. Serve the sliced with a little butter.
5) Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
Let me know how you find this one!
So I've been away from the blog for a while...with good reason! I've been training for a half-marathon! And this morning, I completed it with my friend, Lola aka Africanremy (also has an awesome blog and instagram). Check her out!
So I signed up for this run with only 5 weeks to go before the run. So I got my long distance Nike's on and went for a 15km run! Good! Still got it! Then started training properly!
Recipe | Chai Tea Bread
A new tea bread recipe is always welcome. And one from a "Light Cakes and Desserts" recipe book! And only 302 calories per serving (if you take a whole slice)! Let me know how you find it!
Preparation time: 15 minutes plus standing
Cooking time: 1 1/4 hours
5 Chai tea bags
300mls (1/2 pint) Boiling water
250g Self-raising flour
1 teaspoon Baking powder
150g Light Muscovado sugar
300g Mixed dried fruit
50g Brazil nuts, chopped
1 Egg, beaten
1) Preheat oven to 160oC/140oCFan/325oF/Gas Mark 3 and grease and
line a 1kg (2lb) or 1.3L (2 1/4 pint) loaf tin.
2) Stir the tea bags into the measured water in a jug and leave to stand for
3) Mix together the flour, baking powder, sugar, dried fruit and nuts in a
bowl. Remove the tea bags from the water, squeezing out the excess
water. Thinly slice the butter into the water and stir until melted. Leave
to cool slightly. Add to the dry ingredients with the egg and mix
4) Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and spread it into the corners.
Bake in the oven for 1 1/4 hours or until risen, firm and a skewer
inserted into the centre comes out clean. Loosen the cake at the ends
and transfer to wire rack. Peel off the lining paper and leave to cool.
5) Spread the top with chai cream frosting, if you prefer! (See below)
Chai cream frosting: (113 calories per serving)
1. Put 50mls of milk and 3 Chai tea bags in a saucepan and bring to the
boil. Remove from the heat and leave the tea bags to infuse into the milk
until cold. Discard the tea bags (squeeze out excess first).
2. Beat together 200g of cream cheese and 25g of very soft unsalted
butter in a bowl until smooth.
3. Beat in the flavoured milk and 75g of sifted icing sugar.
Shrove Tuesday Special!
I tried out 3 different pancake recipes (all in the name of research, of course) which I made in smaller batches than below. They all make great mixes and you will love them! Never again will you turn to the ready-made!
1. Drop Scones aka Scotch Pancakes
Makes around 21 pancakes
Cookware needed: a griddle or frying pan
175g (6oz) Self-raising flour
1 level teaspoon Baking powder
40g (1 1/2 oz) Caster sugar
1 large Egg
About 200ml (7 fl oz) Milk
Butter and golden syrup, to serve (optional)
1. Measure the flour, baking powder and sugar into a large bowl, make a
well in the centre and then add the egg and half the milk. Beat to a
smooth, thick batter, then beat in the remaining milk to give the batter
the consistency thick cream.
2. Drop the mixture in tablespoonfuls onto the hot griddle or frying pan
(using vegetable oil), spacing the mixture well apart. When bubbles rise
to the surface, turn the scones over with a palette knife and cook on the
other side for a further 30 seconds to 1 minute, until golden brown.
3. Lift them off onto a wire rack and cover with a clean tea towel to keep
them soft and warm. Cook the remaining mixture in the same way,
serving warm with butter and golden syrup.
2. Lemon and Blueberry pancakes
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: about 15 minutes
125g (4oz) Wholemeal plain flour
1 teaspoon Baking powder
1/4 teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda
2 tablespoons Golden Caster Sugar
Finely grated zest of 1 Lemon
125g (4oz) Natural yoghurt
2 tablespoons Milk
2 medium Eggs
40g ( 1 1/2 oz) Butter
100g (3 1/2 oz) Blueberries
1 teaspoon Sunflower oil
Natural yoghurt and fruit compote to serve
1. Sift the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda into a bowl. Add
the sugar and lemon zest. Pour in the yoghurt and milk. Break the egg
into the mixture and whisk together.
2. Melt 25g (1 oz) Butter in a pan, add to the bowl followed by the
blueberries and stir everything together.
3. Heat a dot of butter with the oil in a frying pan over a medium heat until
hot. Add four large spoonfuls of the mixture to the pan to make four
pancakes. After about 2 minutes, flip them over and cook for 1-2
minutes. Repeat with the remainder of the mixture.
4. Serve with natural yoghurt and some fruit compote.
3. American-Style Pancakes
Prep time: 10 minutes, plus standing
Cooking time: about 15 minutes
1775g (6oz) Self-raising flour
1 Teaspoon baking powder
1 Teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda
A pinch of Salt
50g (2oz) Caster Sugar
1 large Egg, beaten
300ml (1/2 pint) buttermilk
50g (2oz) Butter, melted and cooled slightly, plus extra fro frying
100g milk chocolate chunks or chips (optional)
Crispy streaky bacon and maple syrup to serve
1. In a bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of
soda with a pinch of salt. Stir in the sugar.
2. Combine the egg, buttermilk and butter, and gradually whisk into the
flour to make a smooth batter, the consistency of thick double cream -
add a drop of milk if needed. Add the chocolate chips (if using) and
leave to stand for 5 minutes.
3. Brush the surface of a large frying pan with melted butter over a
medium heat. Pour around 2 tablespoons of the mixture into the centre
of the pan. It should spread to form a 10cm (4in) circle. Cook for 2
minutes or until bubble appear on the surface. Turn it over and cook for
another 1-2 minutes or until golden brown.
4. Continue in batches, re-greasing the pan as needed and serve warm
with crispy bacon and maple syrup.
I loved both the drop scones and the blueberry pancakes but the American-Style pancakes felt too much like a greasy fry up to me. Maybe it would have been better with bacon?!
Oh no, she didn't! Oh yes...... I DID!
I made brownies! Gooey and yummy but in bite-sized pieces you won't be able to resist! Here's how you make these:
Prep: 15 minutes plus cooling
Cook: 14-18 minutes
115g Unsalted butter, cut into pieces, plus extra for greasing
100g Plain chocolate, roughly chopped
140g light Muscovado (soft brown) sugar
1 tspn vanilla extract
55g Plain flour
25g Cocoa powder
40g Pecan or Walnuts, roughly chopped
1. Preheat the oven to 200oC/ 180oC Fan/400oF/ Gas Mark 6. Grease
and line the base and sides of an 18cm/7-inch shallow square cake
2. Put the butter and chocolate in a heatproof bowl, set the bowl over a
saucepan of gently simmering water and heat until melted. Leave the
mixture to cool slightly.
3. Put the eggs, sugar and vanilla in a mixing bowl and beat together (with
an electric handheld whisk or by hand) until the mixture starts to turn
frothy. Stir in the chocolate mixture until combined.
4. Sift the flour and cocoa powder into the bowl and scatter in the nuts. Stir
together gently, then turn the mixture into the tin and level the surface.
5. Bake in the preheated oven for 14 - 18 minutes, or until the crust feels
dry but gives a bit when gently pressed. (If unsure, better to have it
slightly undercooked so it doesn't loose its gooeyness. Another test it to
gently press a nice into natural cracks in the surface and the knife
comes out clean.) Leave in the tin l for 10 minutes before transferring to
a wire rack to cool. Cut into 25 squares (4 lines each way).
Simple yet AMAZE-BALLS! Just made another batch earlier for someone's birthday treats! A tip for melting chocolate and butter is to keep the water level lower than the bottom of the bowl - if it touches the bowl, you may burn the chocolate you're melting.
Let me know how you find this recipe!
Recipe adapted from: Mini Cakes by Jeanna Farrow for Love Food.
All I can say this week is Delish! Lol!
Seriously, after a rather poor attempt at a beetroot red-velvet cupcake mix last Sunday (need to keep working on the beetroot quantities) and a weird but lovely Hot-Cross Bun cupcake recipe from BBC Good Food. I amalgamated two recipes to make these yummy, light Doughnut muffins! From BBC Good Food and "Cupcakes and Muffins" by Love Food, here you are!
Makes 12 - 15 muffins
175g Unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
140g Golden caster sugar
2 Medium eggs, lightly beaten
375g Plain flour
3/4 tablespoon Baking Powder
1/4 teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda
Pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon Freshly grated nutmeg (I substituted ground Cinnamon)
Optional - 12 teaspoons Strawberry/ Raspberry jam
15g Caster sugar
1/4 teaspoon Cinnamon
2 tablespoons Butter, melted
1. Grease a deep 12-cup muffin pan and preheat the oven to
180oC/160oC Fan/350oF/Gas Mark 4. In a large bowl, beat the butter
and sugar together until light and creamy. Add the eggs, a little at a
time, beating well between additions.
2. Sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt and nutmeg (or
cinnamon, in my case) together. Add half to the creamed mixture with
half of the milk. Gently fold together before adding the rest of the flour
3. Spoon the mixture into the prepared muffin tins. If adding jam, fill
halfway, add a teaspoon of jam to the centre of each, then cover with
the remaining mixture.
4. Bake in preheated oven for 15-20 minutes or until the muffins are
lightly brown and firm to the touch. Remove from the oven and add the
topping before leaving to cool on the wire rack.
5. For the topping, mix the sugar and cinnamon together. While the
muffins are still warm from the oven, brush lightly with melted butter,
and sprinkle over the cinnamon and sugar mixture. Eat warm or cold.
That really is all it takes, folks!
Now for another of my confessions. I don't use a whisk for making my mixes. I do it all by hand with a fork. I may use a whisk in the future for the icing efforts that need a nice whipped and fluffy finish but not for the actual baking for now. I wouldn't say no to a KitchenAid as a gift though! lol!
Have a lovely week, all!
I'm Lola - a hair obsessed doctor who stumbled into running long distances and baking all the cupcakes.
I blog about life, running and of course, hair! I'm an Altra "Team Red" Sponsored Athlete, so I will do the occasional running shoe or gadget review.
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