Let’s kick things off with something special, and in keeping with the name of this blog I thought a batch of cupcakes would be a delicious way to get started! These golden treats with their fudge-like topping are sure to delight even the most sophisticated crowd.
- To add a snazzy finishing touch you can drizzle the cupcakes with some leftover tinned caramel or top with spun sugar or small caramel shapes.
SALTED CARAMEL CUPCAKES
For the cupcakes:
- 12 cupcake cases
- 375ml (1½ cups) cake flour
- 10ml (2 tsp) baking powder
- 1.25ml (¼ tsp) salt
- 150g unsalted butter, softened
- 100g light brown sugar
- 150g tinned caramel
- 2 large eggs
- 5ml (1 tsp) vanilla extract
- 60ml (¼ cup) milk
For the salted caramel frosting:
- 125ml (½ cup) castor sugar
- 90ml double cream
- pinch of sea salt flakes
- 25g unsalted butter, softened
- 250ml (1 cup) icing sugar
- 15ml (1 tbsp) milk
1.) Preheat the oven to 170ºC and place 12 cupcake cases in a muffin tray. I like to spray the cases with a little bit of cooking spray to prevent the cupcakes from sticking to the papers.
2.) Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl and set aside.
3.) Place the butter and sugar in a separate bowl and beat until fluffy. Whisk in the caramel. Add the eggs one at a time whisking well between each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the vanilla extract and then whisk again until everything is combined.
4.) Add the flour mixture to the bowl and beat slowly. Add the milk and continue to beat on the slowest speed until the ingredients are just combined.
5.) Divide the mixture between the 12 cupcake cases and pop the tray in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. (Remember to keep an eye on the cupcakes during the last few minutes of baking as ovens do vary.) Allow the cupcakes to cool in the tray for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.
6.) To make the frosting combine the castor sugar with two tablespoons of water in a saucepan. Stir over a low heat to dissolve the sugar. Use a pastry brush dipped in warm water to brush away any sugar crystals that collect on the sides of the pan.
7.) Stop stirring the sugar syrup as soon as it begins to boil. After a few minutes you’ll notice the colour starting to change – at this stage you can start to swirl the saucepan very gently to allow for even heating. Be sure to keep an eye on the sugar syrup as it burns very easily. Continue to boil the mixture until it becomes a deep golden colour, then remove from the heat.
8.) Carefully pour in the cream, taking care as the mixture will bubble up ferociously. Whisk until the mixture is smooth. Add a pinch of sea salt flakes, whisk again then set aside to cool.
9.) Whisk the butter in a separate bowl until fluffy. Sift in half of the icing sugar and beat until the mixture starts to come together (it’ll be quite dry and crumbly). Add a spoon of the cooled caramel sauce and beat until smooth. Add the remaining caramel and continue to mix until everything is combined. Sift in the remaining icing sugar and add the milk. Beat for several minutes until the icing is fluffy. Spread or pipe the icing onto the cooled cupcakes.