Thursday, 27 June 2013

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes (Petits Fours Style) for Rachel

As I mentioned before, I have a lot of brothers and sisters. Six in total! Rachel is one of my middle siblings and like Maddie and I, she loves chocolate... With a twist! Rachel says that her favourite combination of all time is chocolate and peanut butter, any bake that puts those two together is absolute heaven, and I must say that it's hard to disagree with her. Who doesn't like peanut butter and chocolate? Even if it's not a bake, peanut butter and chocolate are delicious together; yum yum, Reeses! Rachel is a mum to three of the most adorable kids on the planet, William, who's 11, Lucy, who'll be 10 this month, and Emmie Rose (my princess!!) who is 3 in December. I thought that while I should bake for Rachel's tastebuds, I should also make the bakes fun and cute to also cater for the kids, so I've made adorable mini mini chocolate peanut butter cupcakes (or Petits Fours, if you're fancy like that!) with peanut butter buttercream icing. Plus, the kiddos aren't dissimilar, I bet they love peanut butter and chocolate too! Here's the recipe:

Ingredients for the sponge:
  • 6oz light brown moscavado sugar
  • 4oz unsalted butter (or, Lurpak "Slightly Salted", the salt will aid the rise)
  • 2oz smooth peanut butter
  • 5oz self-raising flour
  • 1oz cocoa powder 
  • 3 medium/large eggs
  • A big plop of vanilla essence

And for the decoration:
  • 3oz butter, softened
  • 8oz creamy peanut butter
  • 8oz icing sugar
  • Milk until it's smooth

  • Big whisk
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Large wooden or metal spoon
  • Little jug
  • Sieve
  • Spatula
  • Cupcake/bun baking tin
  • Cupcake/bun cases (these can either be the disposable kind, or the re-usable silicone kind)
  • Electric mixer
  • Piping bag

So this is a variation of my classic vanilla sponge recipe, and like its vanilla cousin, it's very easy to follow! Like last time (currant buns) we're working in ounces. You'll need to preheat the oven to 170C/325F/Gas3.

Cream the butter and sugar together in the big bowl with your big whisk. Sometimes it's easier to use a wooden spoon. You'll see why because the butter likes to get stuck inside the whisk. Beat them together until they're light and fluffy in texture, then beat in the creamy peanut butter. Sorry, your arm's going to suffer :( Then, in your little jug, like usual, whisk the eggs together with the vanilla essence until they're one smooth consistency. Now beat the eggs/essence into the peanut butter/butter/sugar mixture. Add it a little bit at a time, and every time you add, beat it until it's smooth. Now, for the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa powder). Sift it all into the bowl, and now you've got to fold it lovingly with the wooden or metal spoon into the mixture, making sure you don't mix with any vigour. 

Evenly portion out the mixture into cake cases which should already be in the tin. When you fill the cases, fill them about 2/3 of the way full. Tap the tin on the work surface so the mixture levels out and is smooth. Pop them in the oven for around 25 minutes. In order to check that the buns are done, do the skewer trick! Stab one of your little cakes with skewer or toothpick in the centre, and if it comes out clean without any residue, they're done. Or, you could opt for the lass violent way and lightly press on the tops of the cakes. If they're springy and the top pops back up, they're done. Cool them on your cooling racks until they're cold.

Make sure your butter is room temperature, and your cakes are 100% cool before decoration.  I know, I know, I've said that using an electric whisk or mixer is cheating, but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do! Especially when you've just been beating the batter of the cakes! Your arm gets tired! But the real reason is that the electric mixer can add the fluffiness that only an electric mixer can do (unless you're Megawoman/Megaman and can whisk at a constant fast pace for at least an hour). Put your butter and peanut butter into your bowl and beat with the electric mixer until it's fluff-ay, not just fluffy (ha!). Now bit by bit add in the icing sugar making sure you're constantly mixing. When it's nice and thick, add your milk 1 teaspoon at a time until all the sugar is smoothly mixed in and the frosting is a little thick but still very malleable. Now beat again until you achieve fluff-ay-ness (this should take around 3 minutes on a constant fast speed). Transfer all your mixture into a piping bag. You don't need a tip, you can just use the bag, unless you're a piping boss and want to get fancy. Now it's time to pipe onto the cakes. If you're not experienced in piping, don't worry, it's not that hard if you have a nice, smooth textured icing. Put the tip of the bag in the middle of the cupcake, squeeze to create a blob that goes to about half the diameter of the cake, then bring your hand around that blob in a circle, then on top of the blob all in a swirling motion. When you're at the top, stop squeezing and take your bag away to create a little spiked peak. VoilĂ ! 

When you've finished all of them, they're ready to eat!

Perfect for parties, or even just for your own personal indulgence ;)

I hope you find these cupcakes to be delicious and cute!

x x x

No comments:

Post a Comment