07 October 2008

Dads Birthday

Okay so I know cupcakes aren't exactly manly. Well they're not really are they? But anyway I thought it wouldn't matter as long as I could stick a candle on it and it tastes good. If something tastes good, who cares what it looks like right?...Hmm well to a point.

The main reason I wanted to make cupcakes was because I wanted to try 2 flavours. The first one was a mini cake variation of my famous chocolate fudge cake. I wanted to see how they would turn out if done in a muffin tray. This recipe is as easy as your gonna get for a cake. Its egg and dairy free and is wonderful when our nephew Oliver comes over or for a family birthday cake as he can eat it too. I have been using this recipe for about 11 years now and its never failed me once. Except that time I was pregnant with Madeline and I grilled it. Twice.

The other recipe was one I found a few years ago in an NZ House and Garden magazine and tucked away in my precious blue recipe folder. Lime and Coconut Cakes. Yum, sounds good. I remarkably had all the recipe items in my pantry...until I got to the part where I needed icing sugar and realised I only had about 1/4 of a cup left. So instead of rushing out to buy it I improvised and used my blender to whiz up some caster sugar and it came out a bit finer and instead of using 1 1/2 cups I cut it down to 1 cup. Also instead of limes I substituted with lemon. Not as strong a flavour but it was all I had.

Both recipes turned out better than I expected. And today, a day after, they are still remarkably moist and actually nicer than they were last night. The chocolate isn't as doughy and I would imagine they will still be quite moist tomorrow, much like the full cake version usually is. These are both fantastic recipes if you are needing to make them up a day or so before eating.
Because I only had 1/4 cup of icing I sent dad off to the supermarket to buy icing for his own cake. And he came back with caster sugar instead of icing sugar (maybe he did it on purpose because he was a little mad at having to source his own cake toppings) so again I had to rummage through the pantry for an alternative to buttercream icing. For the chocolate fudge cakes I melted some dark chocolate and dipped them in and placed a candle in the middle. For the lemon cakes I creamed together the remaining icing with about 1/4 cup of cream cheese and approx 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and dolloped it on top and garnished with grated lemon rind. I didn't want to cover the top of the cakes completely as after they are cooked the tops go all hard and caramelised. Really delicious.

I placed them on a non flowery plate and although they weren't manly they were delicious. They would make a great dinner party dessert if served with berries and a dollop of cream.

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