I felt like blogging today, and I’m currently doing so from my office computer (oops). As I don’t have access to my recent photos from here, I thought I should post about these cupcakes which I had made last year. Yes, last year, when I was busy baking what seemed like hundreds of cupcakes for the christmas charity bakesale. I very much enjoyed and relished the opportunity, because it meant that I could test out a bunch of recipes and had unknowing guinea pigs to try all of them out.
These cupcakes are a combination of what has been termed ‘my best cake recipe ever’ by my mom (and a couple of others but as you know, my mom’s opinion is one of the most important to me) as well as a frosting recipe which I find easier to make than the swiss meringue buttercream, but equally delicious and not-so-sweet. I also tried piping a different kind of rose on the cupcakes and this definitely is more time-consuming than the usual 1M tip swirl rose that you see on most cupcakes. I don’t have a video or step-by-step for this, but a quick google or search on youtube will produce many videos to guide you through. I more or less just extrapolated making buttercream roses on a flower nail onto the cupcake. I can imagine how nice and pretty these cupcakes will look like, especially if they are piped in different shades of red and pink and placed on several tiers to resemble flower arrangements :]
By the way, I want to thank those of you readers, if any of you did vote for me for the Savour Bake-off. I was rather disappointed that I did not win the first prize, which was a trip for two to Paris, but I did get 3rd, and for that, I got a shiny new Kitchenaid. If you have been reading my blog since the very start, you will know that I have Bombino, which is also a red Kitchenaid I received from Jon for Christmas two years ago. I must say that I am quite shocked at how much the KA has increased in price in just two years. I vaguely recall Jon saying that he bought it for about $799, but it is currently retailing at $988 (the exact same model mind you)! That’s almost a 25% increase! Anyway, since I already had my trusty Bombino, I decided to sell the KA and managed to get $750 for it. I guess this would partially fund my own trip to Paris then 😉 I must say however that I was not too disappointed at my loss, because it was clear that the better person did win. Her cake, which was actually an entremet and was also inspired by Pierre Herme’s Mogador (similar to me sian), looked very professionally done, and I too was impressed that she managed to accomplish that in merely 2 hours! Personally, I was glad that I had joined the competition because it did prove to be an invaluable experience. I never did expect myself to be so horribly nervous – my hands very shaking so bad that I could not even plate my dessert properly and the judges, Dean Brettschneider of Baker & Cook, Andres Lara of Pollen and Gontran Cherrier of Tiong Bahru Bakery did give some helpful comments and tips during the competition. Never have I been so glad to take that brave step to submit my recipe! I do hope that I get to join more competitions in the near future, so dear readers, if you know of any baking competition, please let me know heh! Winning a prize is of course a wonderful plus :]
- For the cupcakes:
- 60g egg yolks (from about 3 eggs)
- 140g milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 150g all-purpose flour
- 120g castor sugar
- 10g baking powder (about 2 tsp)
- 2.5g salt (about 0.5 tsp)
- 85g butter
- For the frosting:
- 160g fresh milk
- 21g all-purpose flour
- 150g butter
- 120g granulated sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla paste
- For the cupcakes: in a large mixing bowl, sift in all the dry ingredients - flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Mix it on low speed for about 30 seconds, then add in the softened cubed butter. Increase the speed to about 4 on the Kitchenaid (or medium) and mix until you get coarse crumbs. It will resemble a pie dough at this stage. In a separate measuring jug, combine the egg yolks, milk and vanilla extract. Add this mixture into the large mixing bowl in 3 additions, making sure that the liquid ingredients are fully incorporated into the dry mixture before the next addition. Beat approximately 30 seconds for each addition. Divide the batter equally amongst 10 cupcake holes which has been lined with cupcake liners. Bake at 170 degrees or until the cupcakes become domed and golden brown.
- While the cupcakes are baking, prepare the cooked flour frosting. Place the flour and fresh milk in a saucepan and whisk the mixture over a medium low heat until the flour is well incorporated. Continue whisking the mixture for about 5 minutes, until the mixture thickens and becomes almost glue-y. Remove from heat immediately and allow the mixture to cool to about room temperature. In the meantime, place the softened butter into a large mixing bowl and beat for about 3 minutes on medium speed until light and creamy. Add in the granulated sugar and continue beating for another 3 minutes on medium-high speed, until the mixture becomes very light (pale yellow) and fluffy. Add in the vanilla extract or paste. Then, add in the cooled flour mixture and continue beating on high speed for about 3 to 5 minutes, until the flour mixture is well incorporated and the mixture becomes very glossy and fluffy. Scoop the frosting into a piping bag, fitted with a 1D tip (or any tip you like), and refrigerate it for about 15-30 minutes and no longer. The frosting should be slightly firm and not too hard when you start piping with it.