Filed under Cupcakes

Gluten-Free Vanilla Cupcakes

I’ve tried a few recipes for gluten-free cupcakes but I keep going back to this one.

gluten-free vanilla cupcakes

Vanilla Cupcakes
Adapted from: 500 Cupcakes edited by Fergal Connolly

Ingredients

225g/8oz unsalted butter, softened
225g/8oz caster sugar
225g/8oz gluten-free self-raising flour mix (I like Orgran Gluten-Free Self-Raising Flour)
1 teaspoon gluten-free baking powder
2 tablespoons milk
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

Preheat oven to 175 degrees Celsius/350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In the bowl of a stand mixer beat butter slightly, then add sugar, flour, baking powder, milk, eggs and vanilla. Mix until smooth and pale, about 2 to 3 minutes.

Spoon mixture into 18 – 24 patty cases. (Fill only to half full to avoid muffin tops.) Bake for 15 – 20 minutes.

Remove trays from oven and cool 5 minutes before removing from tray to cool on a rack.

Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 3 months.

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Snapshot – Yellow, Grey and Silver Party

Our new place feels a little more like home after a few of our friends, old and new, stopped by for a little sangria and a few baked treats. We are blessed with generous friends so there was plenty of good food, good drinks and good company.


To spruce up the place a little I made a simple tassel garland in my latest favourite colour scheme yellow and grey/silver. There are many tutorials out there in blogland if you’d like to make your own: The Sweetest Occasion, A Pair & a Spare or Design Dazzle are a few options. If you aren’t DIY-inclined pick up a cute rainbow garland from Lark or a beautiful 12ft long (and the original?) garland from Confetti SystemPenny-Pinching Party Tip – Tissue paper is inexpensive and one pack of silver cellophane did the trick. I think this materials for this garland totalled about $5. Using fabric instead of tissue paper would add to the cost but would allow you to pack it away and use it again as often as needed.


A few simple purchases continued the colour theme; a packet of yellow straws cost $1 and $5 worth of plastic cutlery popped into an empty can. I added some bright yellow cocktail napkins to a stack of plain white ones. Penny-Pinching Party Tip – Clear cups (recyclable) and white plates aren’t as pretty as coloured versions but mean any left over can be saved for another occasion with a different colour scheme.


I made vanilla cupcakes with yellow-tinted buttercream frosting. I don’t think they were quite the best batch I’ve ever made but I’m still getting used to the new oven. No disasters in it yet but it always takes a little while to adjust my recipes to suit the peculiarities of each oven. These simple recipes are economical and the frosting can be tinted to suit your occasion. Penny-Pinching Party Tip – Don’t underestimate how much people love a simple, homemade cupcake.

chocolate chip new york times recipe cookies
In addition to the cupcakes, I made pumpkin chocolate chip muffins (one batch makes 36 muffins), snickerdoodles and chocolate chip cookies. I’m again convinced this recipe from The New York Times is great. To half the batch I added milk and dark chocolate chunks and to the other half I mixed in Heath Milk Chocolate Toffee Bits.

Today we are cleaning up and munching on leftover party food. I think I’ll leave the garland up for a little while. For more yellow and grey check out my Pinterest board titled Yellow Room.

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White Chocolate Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Yesterday was Mother’s day here in Australia. I honored the memory of my mother by participating in an annual fun run which raised money for the National Breast Cancer Foundation. While my mother has been gone too long for me to remember the sound of her voice, some of the strongest memories I have of her contain her baking and her cooking.

Her roast dinners with Yorkshire puddings, the thin, speckled crepe-like pancakes with golden syrup on Shrove Tuesdays and the amazing birthday cakes she made for my brother, father and I each year. Today the scent of freshly-squeezed lemon juice reminds me of something she would make in the kitchen, I just can’t remember what it was she added lemon juice to. Perhaps it was the cheesecake she made with Philadelphia cream cheese or the warm lemon pudding she baked in a large oval-shaped Pyrex dish.

 Katie in the kitchen, 1984

Today I mix my cakes with the same metal spoon she did, the one I’m holding in the photo above. I made these white chocolate cupcakes with her in mind, and shared them with the friends who ran with me yesterday. We raised over $900 for the fight against the disease that took my mother too soon.

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Bacon and Maple Syrup Cupcakes

The invitation read: MEAT-A-THON. The concept of Meat-a-thon is simple. Everyone brings something different. Even a little exotic. We try to BBQ as many kinds of meat as possible.

So, of course I had to try a dessert that adhered to the theme. You know I love a theme. It seemed only right to make a bacon cupcake, almost everyone seems to love bacon. Ok, not everyone. I’ll eat it occasionally but I’m not crazy for it. However, the idea of a salty-sweet cupcake beckoned, so I did some research and combined a few recipes to come up with these bacon and maple syrup cupcakes.

Yes, it is a little odd to find bacon inside a cupcake but somehow it works. Would I make these again? Probably only if asked, but I will try the maple syrup in cupcake batter again, as per hubby’s request.

Bacon and Maple Syrup Cupcakes
Adapted from various recipes, including Cupcake Crew’s
Makes 24

Ingredients

For cupcakes:

About 6 – 8 strips thick-cut bacon
1 and 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup cake flour
2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
 2 cups caster sugar
3 eggs, at room temperature
1 cup milk, at room temperature
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup

For frosting:

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
3 cups icing sugar
2 tablespoons milk, more if required
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup

Directions

For cupcakes:

Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Place liners in cupcake trays.

Lay bacon on a sheet pan and bake for about 15 minutes until crisp and golden brown. Set aside 2 pieces of the bacon for garnish, and dice the rest.
Lower heat to 175 degrees Celsius. 

In a bowl, combine flours, baking powder and salt; set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

Add the eggs to the butter mixture 1 at a time, mixing well after each addition. Slowly add the dry ingredients and milk in alternating batches, beginning and finishing with the dry and mixing well between additions. Then add maple syrup and diced bacon, and mix on medium  speed until combined. Do not over mix.

Scoop batter into prepared cupcake pan, making each cup 2/3 full. Bake for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. 

For frosting:

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until light and fluffy.

Gradually add sifted icing sugar and milk (as required). Add maple syrup and beat until combined and fluffy.

Decorate cupcakes with frosting and garnish with reserved bacon.

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Cupcakes

80 cupcakes for my cousin David’s birthday. Happy birthday! I hope the party was a smash.

And yes, I just got an iphone. And no, every post won’t feature iphone pics from now on.

Vanilla recipe
Chocolate recipe

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Vanilla Cupcakes with Sprinkles

I made these pink cupcakes for no other reason than to make cupcakes. Pink cupcakes with sprinkles that is. These cake forks belong to my nanna and I loved using them when I was young. I remember eating some type of cake at her house, I’m pretty sure the cake had sprinkles too. The best part of having cake at nanna’s house was picking out a cake fork to use. The one with the pink flowers, or the purple or yellow. Never the fork that had somehow lost its artwork though!

Vanilla cupcake recipe

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Green Velvet Cupcakes

How to make green velvet cupcakes.

Step 1: Make cupcake batter according to red velvet cake recipe, using green food colouring in place of red.

Step 2: Pour batter into cupcake trays.

Step 3: Discover oven is broken, see thermostat lying on bottom of oven.

Step 4: Place batter-filled cupcake trays into cupcake courier.

Step 5: Drive to grandmother’s house with cupcake courier on back seat. Avoid speed bumps, sharp corners and pot holes.

Step 6: Ask grandmother to bake the cupcakes.

Step 7: Pick up cupcakes from grandmother’s house and leave one behind for her.

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Red Velvet Cupcakes

I used my regular recipe but reduced the oil content. The last few times I’ve made red velvet cupcakes the oil has seemed to settle in the bottom of the cupcakes and left an unpleasant aftertaste. Official Cupcake Tester aka hubby said the aftertaste problem was gone but they were not quite velvety enough so next time I’ll use 1 and 1/4 cups of oil. The recipe makes 24 cupcakes and they cooked in about 24 minutes. The cream cheese frosting recipe can be found here. Four cupcakes were given to my friend Sybella who started a brand new job today (we will miss you!), eleven went to hubby’s friends for their regular Monday night football get-together, a couple were sacrificed for taste testing and the rest went to my Dad and Nanna. I didn’t have one. I really do like the making more than the eating for some treats. Unless it’s chocolatey of course.

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