Mothering Sunday

Not so average cupcakes for my not so average mother! Whenever you struggle to think of a gift idea, the power of baking swoops in and saves you. Not only that, but cupcakes in particular can be a really thoughtful and personal gift for someone. 

My lovely mum, for example, has a thing for skulls - we've got them all over the house and she's got them all over her clothes. So what better gift to give her than a dozen red velvets decorated with handmade sugar paste skulls. The edible red and silver glitter made them look that much cooler... And success - she loved them. Click below for my Red Velvet recipe!

Happy Mother's Day all.

- 300g caster sugar
- 120g unsalted butter
- 2 eggs
- 40ml red food colouring
- 1 heaped tablespoon cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
- 300g plain flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 240ml whole milk
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar

- 600g icing sugar
- 80g unsalted butter
-200g cream cheese (e.g. philadelphia)

Makes 12-14 cupcakes.
Preheat the oven to 190 degrees. 
Line a muffin tray with muffin cases.

1. In a mixing bowl, mix together the caster sugar and butter using your fingers, until they are well combined and resemble breadcrumbs. Add in the two eggs and mix thoroughly, preferably with an electric whisk.

2. In a separate bowl, mix together the food colouring, cocoa powder and vanilla essence until they form a kind of paste. Add this to the butter/sugar mix and beat until well combined and the mixture is an even colour.

3. In another bowl, sift together the flour and salt. Add this to the butter/sugar mix in small batches until well combined, scraping down the flour from the sides. 

4. Then, in a measuring jug, mix together the milk and lemon juice. Pour this into the batter in batches again, mixing thoroughly after each addition. 

5. Add the bicarbonate of soda and white wine vinegar to the batter and beat immediately, until all is well incorporated. 

6. Spoon the batter evenly into the muffin cases (I like to use an ice cream scoop for this), until each is filled about two thirds of the way. Be careful not to fill them up too high or they'll spill over in the oven.

7. Bake this for 18-20 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean.

8. To make the icing, first combine the icing sugar and butter with your fingers until you achieve a sandy consistency. Then add in cream cheese and beat well with an electric whisk - you may add food colouring at this point if you wish. You must wait until your cakes have fully cooled before applying the icing on top.

9. Sit back, relax and enjoy your RVCC's.

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