Ingredients (makes 12):
- 200g self-raising flour
- 20g cornflour
- 115g butter
- 160g caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- 120ml buttermilk (see recipe for alternative)
- Zest of 1 orange
- 100ml orange juice
Pimm’s strawberry jelly filling:
- 200g strawberries
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp cornflour
- 2 tbsp Pimm’s
Cucumber and mint syrup:
- 1 handful of mint, chopped
- 12 thin slices of cucumber
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 2 tbsp water
- 120g butter
- 240g icing sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla essence
- Preheat the oven to 160ºC and line a muffin tray with 12 cupcake cases.
- Cream together the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.
- Add the eggs, followed by the orange zest and orange juice, and mix gently.
- Sieve in the flour and cornflour, and then add the buttermilk. If you don’t have buttermilk, you can make your own by adding 1
- and a half teaspoons of lemon juice to 120ml of regular milk.
- Beat your mix well to ensure an even consistency. It should be a fairly runny mix, so don’t worry if it seems a bit thinner than normal cupcakes.
- Split the mix between the paper cases and bake for 30 minutes, or until they have turned a golden colour and pass the knife test.
Once the cakes are in the oven, you can make a start with the filling.
- Blend the strawberries in a food processor and pour into a small pan through a fine sieve to remove the pips. It’ll still work if you don’t sieve it, but using one will make it much smoother.
- Add the sugar, cornflour, and Pimm’s to the pan and heat gently.
- Stir the mix regularly with a whisk until it becomes thick and jelly-like.
- Leave to cool.
The syrup also requires heating in a pan, so you can make this at the same time as the Pimm’s strawberry filling.
- Add the chopped mint and cucumber slices to a small pan. Add 2 tablespoons of sugar and 2 tablespoons of water.
- Heat until the water starts to bubble, then turn off the heat. Allow it to cool slightly before straining the syrup into a glass to cool fully.
For the buttercream:
- Beat the butter first to soften it, before sieving in the icing sugar.
- Once peaks are starting to form, add a teaspoon of vanilla essence and continue beating until the mixture is strong and stiff.
Once you’ve finished making the various components, it’s time to assemble the final cakes.
- Using a knife or corer if you have one, remove a hole from the middle of each of the cupcakes, saving the removed piece. (see below)
- Add one teaspoon of the Pimm’s strawberry filling to the hole in each cupcake. Using the removed piece, cover the top of the hole.
- Using a piping bag if you have one, ice the cupcakes with the buttercream.
- Drizzle the cucumber and mint syrup over the cupcakes.
- Decorate with sliced fresh strawberries, orange, cucumber and mint.
(Recipe adapted from http://www.goodtoknow.co.uk/recipes/535447/pimms-cupcakes)
After my recent endeavours with gin-flavoured cake, I thought it was time for another summery alcoholic cake!
This weekend, I went over to a friend’s house for a night of cocktails and catching up with the three of us. It’d been several months since I’d seen either of them, so it was lovely seeing them again and I decided to bake for the occasion! Off the back of recent inspiration and practice at making drinks, our wonderful hostess suggested a gin-based cocktail evening, and of course we didn’t have any objections.
Given that we were going to be drinking anyway, I thought it best to keep away from the gin drizzle cake recipe. Those who have tasted it will be able to certify that it’s rather boozy!
So instead I opted for another alcohol-inspired cake, but one that’s traditionally a little bit less alcoholic yet still associated with summer – Pimm’s. My love for Pimm’s rivals my feelings towards the mighty G&T. In my book, no summer is truly complete unless you’ve had at least a glass of Pimm’s.
Naturally then, my main worry with this cake was doing justice to the drink, particularly in balancing the various flavours, but I think this works. The different tastes sit well alongside each other and you’re left to sample serenely each of the flavours that goes into the wondrous concoction that is a glass of Pimm’s.
So relax, sit back in the summer sun and enjoy a light fruity cupcake! Cheers!