Thursday, March 28, 2013

Old Fashioned Chocolate (Cup)cakes

Old Fashioned Chocolate Cupcakes

Make 12 regular cupcakes

For the cake
200g plain flour
200g caster sugar
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
40g cocoa powder
175g unsalted butter (soft)
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
150ml (140g) *regular plain Greek yogurt (or sour cream)

For the icing (1/2 the original recipe since cupcakes need less icing than a whole cake)

38g unsalted butter
88g dark chocolate (broken into small pieces)
150g icing sugar
1½ tsp golden syrup
63ml Greek yogurt (full fat or low fat or 0% fat doesn't matter) or sour cream
½ tsp vanilla extract


1) Take everything out of the fridge so that all the ingredients can come to room temperature.

2) Preheat the oven to gas mark 4/180°C and line muffin pan with cupcake linings.

3) Put all the cake ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder and bicarb, cocoa, butter, eggs, vanilla and sour cream) into a food processor and process until you have a smooth, thick batter.

4) Divide this batter, using a rubber spatula & a spoon, into the prepared muffin pan and bake until a cake tester, or a thin skewer, comes out clean, which should be about 22 minutes. Start checking on the cake at 18 minutes as every oven is different.

5) Remove the cupcakes with the muffin pan to a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes before removing them from the muffin pan. Don't worry about any cracks as they will easily be covered by the icing later.

6) To make this icing, melt the butter and chocolate in a good-sized bowl either in the microwave or suspended over a pan of simmering water. Go slowly either way: you don't want any burning or seizing.

7) While the chocolate and butter are cooling a little, sieve the icing sugar into another bowl.

8) Add the golden syrup to the cooled chocolate mixture, followed by the sour cream and vanilla and then when all this is combined, whisk in the sieved icing sugar.

9) When you've done, you may need to add a little boiling water - say a teaspoon or so - or indeed some more icing sugar: it depends on whether you need the icing to be runnier or thicker; or indeed it may be right as it is. It should be liquid enough to coat easily, but thick enough not to drip off.

10) Pipe this icing on the cupcakes and decorate or spread this icing over the cupcakes with a spatula.


*I prefer Greek yogurt as it makes the cake softer & more moist.


Adapted from Nigella Lawson.

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