Sticky toffee cupcakes

Sticky toffee cupcakes

By
From
Boutique Baking
Makes
24 cupcakes
Photographer
Georgia Glynn Smith

This is the Parlour’s most popular cupcake. Due to the gooey caramel centre, this cake is very moist. Its pudding-like texture makes it the perfect comfort food for cold and rainy autumn days.

For the decoration

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
250g marzipan
small amount white vegetable fat
small amount edible copper
gold lustre powder

For the frosting

Quantity Ingredient
200g full-fat cream cheese
200g unsalted butter, softened
500g icing sugar, sifted
120g dulce de leche or soft caramel, or make your own by boiling a can of sweetened condensed milk submerged in water for 3 hours

For the cake mix

Quantity Ingredient
70ml water
290g dates, pitted and roughly chopped
1.5 teaspoons vanilla extract
130g unsalted butter, softened
240g muscovado sugar
290g self-raising
1.5 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
3 large eggs
145g walnuts

For the sugar syrup

Quantity Ingredient
150ml water
150g caster sugar

For the filling

Quantity Ingredient
250g dulce de leche or soft caramel

Equipment

Quantity Ingredient
basic baking kit
autumn leaf silicon mould
large soft brush
paint palette or perforated foam pad, to dry leaves
2 12-hole muffin trays
24 large brown cupcake cases
plastic piping bags
large round piping nozzle
Making a paper piping bag

Method

  1. To make the decoration

    Make the autumn leaf decorations at least one day ahead of assembling and serving. Make one leaf per cupcake.

    Knead the marzipan until smooth and pliable. Rub a thin layer of white vegetable fat over the mould. Place a walnut-sized piece of marzipan into the mould and, using a rolling pin, press down until the marzipan covers the leaf design. Flatten and smooth the surface with your fingers until it is an even thickness, then trim away any excess marzipan with a kitchen knife. Carefully bend the mould outwards to release the leaf. Place the leaf on a small piece of greaseproof paper. For an autumnal effect, brush the leaf with a mixture of edible copper and gold lustre powder. Transfer the leaf to a foam flower pad and leave to set.
  2. Preheat the oven to 175°C. Prepare the muffin trays by placing the cupcake cases inside the holes.
  3. To make the frosting

    Place the cream cheese in a mixing bowl and beat until smooth and creamy.
  4. Place the butter and icing sugar in a separate mixing bowl and cream together until very pale and fluffy.
  5. Add the cream cheese, a little at a time, to the butter mixture and mix at medium-high speed until the frosting is combined. Add the dulce de leche. Chill until set.
  6. To make the cupcakes

    Place the chopped dates into a mixing bowl and pour over the boiling water. Leave to soak for 20 minutes.
  7. Once soaked, drain the dates and then gently break them up into smaller pieces. Add the vanilla extract to the dates.
  8. Place the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and cream together until pale and fluffy.
  9. Sift the flour and bicarbonate of soda into a separate bowl and set aside.
  10. Whisk the eggs lightly in another bowl and slowly stir into the butter mixture. If the mixture starts to separate or curdle, stop adding the egg and beat in 2–3 tablespoons of the flour. This will rebind the batter.
  11. Once all the egg has been incorporated into the butter mixture, fold in the remaining flour using a rubber spatula, followed by the soaked dates and chopped walnuts. Stir until the batter is just combined. This will ensure the sponges stay light and fluffy.
  12. Using a plastic piping bag or a tablespoon, carefully place the batter into the cupcake cases until two-thirds full only.
  13. Bake for 15–20 minutes, depending on your oven. The cupcakes are cooked when the tops are golden brown and spring back to the touch. If in doubt, insert a clean knife or wooden skewer into the centre of each sponge; it should come out clean.
  14. To make the sugar syrup

    While the cupcakes are baking, prepare the sugar syrup for soaking. Place the water and caster sugar into a saucepan and bring to the boil. Simmer until all the sugar crystals have dissolved. Set aside to cool down slightly.
  15. Once the cupcakes are baked, let them rest for about 10 minutes outside of the oven. Using a pastry brush, soak the tops of the cupcakes with sugar syrup while they are still warm; this allows the the syrup to be absorbed faster.
  16. Once just warm, remove the cupcakes from the trays and leave to cool completely on a wire cooling rack.
  17. Once cool, wrap the cupcakes in cling film and then chill for 1 hour or until the sponge feels firm to the touch. Using a melon baller, scoop out the tops of each cupcake.
  18. To add the filling

    Place the dulce de leche into a plastic piping bag and use to fill the scooped-out holes of the cupcakes.
  19. To decorate

    Prepare a plastic piping bag fitted with a large plain round nozzle. Fill with the chilled frosting. Pipe a swirl of frosting on top of each cupcake.
  20. To finish, place a marzipan leaf on the top of the frosting for each cupcake.
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