Nifty Gift

by hettychatters

I like to put lots of thought into presents, I like to get excited in a girly, fairy-god-motheresque kind of way. So last Sunday morning spent baking presents, wearing pj bottoms and a nice soft jumper, was as good as any morning is going to get for me.
I just made some basic cupcakes, I’ve tried a few recipes and decided . I hollowed out the middle with a gimmick product ‘cupcake corer‘ which turned out to do the job quite nicely, and filled the middles with lemon curd and strawberry jam for extra delicousness. I was asked if these came from the Hummingbird Bakery so I suppose I can call that a job well done?! Topped them with butter-cream and put them in a pretty little cake box, this one I found in Morrisons if anyone is looking for some!

Also, great tip I picked up from The Great British Bake Off Masterclass, put cold butter in a jug with warm water and leave for a minute to soften, then drain and you have perfect, baking-ready butter instead!

Always invest in good jams and curd of not making your own(I shall be doing that soon!), they taste so much better, I think anyway. Plus the labels are prettier.

Basic vanilla cupcakes with extra filling and butter-cream: This makes 6-8 cupcakes, I use a muffin tray.

115g soft unsalted butter
115g caster sugar
2 eggs, beaten
115g self raising flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1tbsp milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp glycerin
Lemon curd
Strawberry jam (or any chosen fillings!)

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C, line your tray with pretty cupcake cases. Whisk the butter and sugar together with an electric whisk, when pale and fluffy add the egg a spoonful at a time with a spoonful of flour too, this stops it from curdling. Next sift in the rest of the flour into the mix, and the baking powder, then mix in the milk, glycerin and vanilla.  Spoon into cases and cook for about 15 mins, or until a knife inserted comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Once cool,  cut off any uneven parts of the cupcake, so you have a flat surface to ice onto (eat these bits!) use the cupcake corer, twist it in until about a 3rd deep, then twist back up again, be gentle and it will work. Then fill with chosen super tasty treats.

For the butter cream:

250g unsalted butter
250g sifted icing sugar
1-2 tbsp of chosen flavor, i used 2 tbsp of lemon juice, and 1 tbsp of strawberry jam after splitting the mix. Then, just a dot of food coloring.

Cream the soft butter and sugar together with the liquid. Then either pipe or spread into mounds on the cupcakes. Top with a little extra decor if you like.

I love making birthday cards too, as you can see, they don’t need to take hours of labor,  and can be simple designs done whilst watching Sunday Brunch. I used a water soluble pen to write with, and then added shadows with a fine paint brush dabbed with water.

The yellow have grated lemon zest atop, and sliced strawberries on the pink ones. A heavy dusting of icing sugar for finishing makes the butter-cream dry to the touch.

How happy to these little beauties make you? Pro-looking cakes, affordable and simple, to make a perfect gift!