Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Sweet and Simple Bakes - Vanilla Cupcakes

Finally! The essay is finished and handed in. What a nightmare. Talk about making things difficult for yourself. All was going very well until Sunday when I got up and looked at what I'd written was rubbish and appalling and not even relevant and decided to start all over again. I'm an idiot. I think I was just over-thinking the whole situation and making things more difficult than they needed to be - not only have I not had to write an essay for about 3 years but the last essays I was writing were for my Masters degree and this is just a Diploma level, there's no need to panic.

Once I sat back a bit and stopped freaking out completely I realised what I needed to do and set about writing my masterpiece. Well. Maybe not masterpiece.
Either way it is now out of my hands and handed in so now it's just a case of waiting.

So what did I do to cheer myself up when I was buried under a mountain of papers and couldn't see an end in sight? Got myself in the kitchen!

The Sweet and Simple Bakes blog is something I've been following for a while but haven't plucked up the courage to try out. So this is my first go - I couldn't resist these babies!!They were absolutely brilliant and did exactly what they said on the tin - they are sweet and oh so simple!! Simply chuck all the ingredients in the bowl, give it a whisk, put in the cases and you're off! Which meant that I didn't need to feel guilty about taking time out from essay writing to make them - you are supposed to give your brain a rest after all!!

The other fantastic thing about this recipe is that I got to take a trip back to my childhood and play with food colouring and sprinkles - nothing wrong with that.

These cupcakes are soft, fluffy and light and I could happily eat a million of them. But I'm trying not to!

Vanilla Cupcakes
Makes 12


175g (6 oz) self-raising flour

1½ level tsp baking powder

175g (6 oz) butter, softened

175g (6 oz) caster sugar

3 large eggs

2 tbsp milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

Buttercream Icing

150g (5oz) butter, softened

300g (11 oz) icing sugar, sifted

1 tbsp milk

¼ tsp vanilla extract

Edible food colouring(s) of choice, optional

Sprinkle(s) for decoration of choice

You will also require 12 holed muffin tin lined with 12 paper muffin cases


Preheat the oven to 180°C/Fan oven 160°C/350°F/Gas mark 4.

Sift the self-raising flour and baking powder into a large bowl, and then add the butter, caster sugar, eggs, milk and vanilla extract.

Beat together until well mixed, trying not to over mix the mixture.

Spoon the mixture equally into the prepared paper cases and bake in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes or until the tops spring back when lightly pressed.

To make the buttercream, beat the butter until soft. Add the icing sugar and stir until it’s just mixed in, then add the milk and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy. Divide into as many bowls as you want different colour(s) and add edible food colouring (you only require a few drops). This is purely optional should you wish to leave out the edible food colouring(s) and keep the buttercream natural. Spread the icing on thickly with a palette knife on top of each cupcake or put the icing into a piping back and make a large swirl on top of each cupcake. Decorate each cupcake with your chosen sprinkle(s).

I'm really looking forward to trying out more bakes at Sweet and Simple and at least I will now have an excuse to get in the kitchen and make things - I'm constantly having to find good reasons for going and baking things and now I'll have a perfect one - for at least once a month...


Sophie said...

Seriously...the food on the blog must stop! It's only 8am over here and I'm trying to keep myself happy with "fiber" waffles...not working so well.

Maria♥ said...

Your cupcakes are adorable!! I made mine today and will blog them tomorrow ;o)


♥Rosie♥ said...

A warm welcome to Sweet & Simple Bakes and lovely to meet you :0) You live not far away from me - I'm from Lincolnshire.

Your cupcakes are just stunning!! I am so pleased you like the Vanilla Cupcakes recipes I posted this month.

Thanks for taking part and hope you will join us again in our next bake.

Rosie x

myspicykitchen said...

beautiful cakes... I made them too

Uma said...

Looks perfect and pretty :)

Illona said...

Nothing like a good cupcake to de-stress huh? Helps if it's smothered with luscious icing and colourful sprinkles. Hope to see you again at the next bake.

natalia said...

Ciao ! I love your colorful cupcakes ! They are a joy to look at !

Arundathi said...

Perfect spring colors! Lovely!

The Curious Cat said...

Thanks for visiting me! Just been snooping around your blog - those visitors you had look particularly cute and rather cheeky climbing all over the place!!! :) xxx