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iol lif jan 14 ST AD Choc pomegranate ccakes1

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CHOCOLATE AND POMEGRANATE CUPCAKES Picture: Chris Collingridge

CHOCOLATE AND POMEGRANATE CUPCAKES

Makes 18

180g butter

360ml castor sugar

3 eggs

125ml self-raising flour

345ml cake flour

5ml bicarbonate of soda

160ml cocoa powder

200ml pomegranate juice

Icing

125g thick cream cheese

100g butter

500ml icing sugar

5ml vanilla extract

pomegranate rubies to decorate

Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition.

Sift the flour, bicarbonate of soda and cocoa. Add to the creamed mixture alternately with the pomegranate juice and mix well.

Spoon the mixture into muffin pans and bake at 180°C for 20-30 minutes or until a skewer inserted into a cake comes out clean.

Remove from the oven and cool.

ICING: Beat the cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy. Add the icing sugar and beat well. Beat in the vanilla extract.

Put the icing into a piping bag with a star nozzle and pipe swirls on to the cupcake. Decorate with pomegranate rubies.

COFFEE AND MALTED PUFF CUPCAKES

Makes 16-18

380ml cake flour

5ml baking powder

3ml bicarbonate of soda

2 eggs

180ml castor sugar

10ml rose essence

125ml oil

10ml coffee powder

30ml boiling water

125ml buttermilk

100g coffee flavoured malted puffs, lightly crushed

Icing

125g thick cream cheese

100g butter

10ml coffee powder dissolved in 20ml hot water

500ml icing sugar

malted puffs for decoration

Sift the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda.

Beat the eggs and castor sugar until thick and pale. Beat in the rose essence and oil.

Dissolve the coffee in the water and add to the buttermilk.

Add the flour alternately with the coffee mixture to the eggs. Mix until well blended.

Fold in the malted puffs.

Spoon the mixture into paper-lined muffin tins and bake at 180°C for 20-30 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cupcakes comes out clean. Remove and cool.

ICING: Beat cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy. Beat in the coffee. Add the icing sugar and beat well. Spread or pipe the icing on to the cupcakes and decorate with either whole or crushed malted puffs.

LEMON MERINGUE CUPCAKES

Makes 16-18

125g butter

250ml castor sugar

2 eggs

grated rind of 1 lemon

500ml flour

7ml baking powder

2ml bicarbonate of soda

250ml buttermilk

250ml bought or home made lemon curd

Icing

250ml castor sugar

80ml water

2 egg whites

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition.

Sift the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk. Mix until smooth.

Spoon the mixture into paper-lined muffin pans. Bake at 180°C for 20-30 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool completely.

Hollow out a portion of each cupcake and fill with a spoonful of lemon curd.

ICING: Combine the castor sugar and water in a small pot, heat without boiling until the sugar has dissolved.

Bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes.

In an electric mixer beat the egg whites until stiff. While beating, pour in the boiling sugar syrup. Beat for about 10 minutes until very thick.

Put the mixture into a piping bag with a plain nozzle. Pipe swirls on to the cupcakes. Brown under a hot grill or with a blow torch.

PEACH MELBA CUPCAKES

Makes 16-18

150g butter

250ml castor sugar

3 eggs

5ml vanilla extract

500ml flour

7ml baking powder

3ml bicarbonate of soda

200ml plain yoghurt

1-2 nectarines, finely chopped

100g raspberries

pink and white butter icing

extra sliced peaches

raspberries for decoration

Butter icing

125g butter

625ml icing sugar

5ml vanilla essence

about 50ml milk

pink food colouring

Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla essence.

Sift the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Add to the creamed mixture alternately with the yoghurt. Fold in the nectarines and the raspberries.

Spoon the mixture into paper-lined muffin pans and bake at 180°C for 20-30 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cakes comes out clean. Remove and cool.

BUTTER ICING: Cream the butter until soft. Add sifted icing sugar and vanilla extract and enough milk to make an icing with a consistency that can be spread or piped easily.

Divide the mixture in half. Add a few drops of food colouring to one half and mix well.

To decorate, put a star nozzle into a piping bag then, using a palette knife, place white icing on one side of the icing bag and the coloured icing on the other side.

Pipe swirls on to each cupcake and decorate with a slice of peach and a raspberry. - The Star

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