Just about everyone loves a cupcake. Believed to have originated in America back in the 18th century, these delicious little (or not-so-little) treats probably get their name from the measurement of ingredients (a cup of butter, two cups of sugar etc.) and have resulted in the treat we know today. Also known as fairy cakes here in the UK, you’ve probably thought ‘I reckon I could have a go at making them’ but never got round to it, or wondered how easy it would be.
So, how simple is it to make cupcakes? Well, it’s actually very simple, especially if you buy pre-made icing and perhaps some simple decorations like chocolate shavings or hundreds and thousands to finish. Depending on how artistic you are, and how steady your hand is, you can end up with a professional finish too. To begin with, you may find it easier to spoon rather than pipe the icing on and then smooth it over. It’ll taste just the same!
Here, then, is your simple step-by-step guide to making cupcakes, which will stay fresh for around 2-3 days in an airtight container at room temperature, and 4-5 days in the refrigerator. When stored in the freezer in an airtight container they should keep for up to 3-4 months.
Ingredients for around 30 cupcakes: 300g butter (at room temperature) – cut into large pieces, 300g self-raising flour, 300g caster sugar, 300g chocolate chips (white and/or milk chocolate), 1 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp vanilla extract, 6 large eggs, icing sugar (pre-made or own recipe)
Step 1 – Cream butter and sugar together
Mix all of the butter and sugar together in a bowl with a wooden spoon.
Step 2 – Beat the eggs
Beat all of the eggs with a whisk or large spoon.
Step 3 – Add the eggs and most of the flour
Add the egg mixture and most of the flour into the bowl.
Step 4 – Sieve in the remaining flour
Sieve in the rest of the flour into the mix.
Step 5 – Add baking powder and vanilla essence
Add the baking powder and vanilla essence and mix well.
Step 6 – Add chocolate chips
Add chocolate chips (milk and/or white chocolate) and mix well.
Step 7 – Spoon into cupcake cases
Spoon the mixture into cupcake cases on a muffin/bun baking tray.
Step 8 – Cook for 25-30 mins at 180°c
Put the tray into the oven for up to 30 minutes. Check the cupcakes at around 20 minutes and then every 3-5 minutes afterwards until they are ready (golden brown).
Step 9 – Allow to cool on a wire rack
Remove the cupcakes from the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack.
Step 10 – Add icing and decorate
Once the cupcakes have cooled sufficiently, ice and decorate as you wish!