Sunday, 12 July 2009
Happy Birthday Kid!
Like most people I am partial to a cupcake. For my birthday I was so pleased with Noy's gift of The Hummingbird Bakery cookbook and luckily it's my sisters birthday today, perfect opportunity to make my first batch of Hummingbird cupcakes.
My usual tried and tested cupcake recipe is from Nigella's 'How to Eat' and I admit to being slightly wary, at first, of the prospect of this change. People love my cupcakes. I needn't have worried for the Hummingbird sponge is light and airy and the frosting (vanilla butter icing) was smooth and fluffy. I can't wait to get stuck in and make some more varieties, the pumpkin, the marshmallow and the green tea particularly appeal to me.
The only gripes I had were that the sponge stuck slightly to the cases, this is irritating, though was better the next day and could be partly due to the quality of the cases themselves. Also, the recipe leaves little mixture for licking the bowl, one could always make less cakes though, there really does need to be a bit leftover in my opinion! It's all part of the fun.
For the sponge:
120g plain flour
140g caster sugar
40g unsalted butter
100ml whole milk
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
a pinch of salt
1/4 tsp vanilla
Blend the dry ingredients with the butter, I used an electric hand mixer on the lowest speed and made quite a mess. Mix until sand like in texture.
Add half of the milk, blend again.
Break up the egg with the remainder of the milk, add the vanilla essence and add this slowly to the flour and butter mix and whisk until smooth.
Spoon into the cases and bake for 15-18 mins at 170 degrees in a pre heated oven.
For the frosting
150g icing sugar
60g unsalted butter
25ml whole milk
3 drops of vanilla extract
Sift the icing sugar, combine thoroughly with the butter and add the milk and vanilla in 2 equal amounts. Whisk the mixture until smooth, they recommend at least 5 mins.
Allow the cakes to cool completely before icing.
A couple of notes - The specimens in the bakery are made using American sized cases, I used the smaller versions that are most commonly available here and adjusted the cooking time slightly. Also our oven is a bugger and is significantly hotter on the left side so I cooked these in batches of 8 leaving the other 4 places of the tray empty. All ingredients should be at room temperature.