It’s a rite of passage making cupcakes for the first time, surely?
I mean really making them for the first time. No help from an adult. Having to weigh things yourself without supervision; setting the right temperature on the oven; mixing everything properly so there is no flour hanging around on the bottom of the mixing bowl.
I’m also a big believer that getting involved in the kitchen is a brilliant maths lesson.
These really are the best cupcakes to make with kids. The recipe is super easy – you basically throw everything in one bowl and mix – and they get lots of kudos because the cakes look really pretty too.
It’s a recipe I’ve had scribbled down on a piece of paper for years, given to me by a friend of a friend and said piece of paper is grease splattered, worn at the edges and looks a million years old. So now I’ve transferred it to this blog for safe keeping!
225g softened butter
225g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 large eggs, beaten
225g self-raising flour
5 tbsp milk
For the topping
350g icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Splash of milk
Preheat your oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.
Put paper cases in to two 12-hole bun tins.
Put the butter, sugar and vanilla into a large bowl and beat together until light and fluffy. This is quite tough for a child to do so it’s ideal if you can give them a bowl with a handle on the side that they can hold. Alternatively you can hold the bowl for them while they BEAT IT vigorously!
Gradually mix in the eggs. It looks like a gloopy mess at this stage but it’s supposed to!
Now fold in the flour gently, ensuring all the flour is incorporated and add the milk in-between the mixing.
Spoon the mixture evenly into all the cases. We’ve actually found that we prefer to use 22 and have them rise that little bit further.
Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until the cakes have risen and are firm to the touch.
Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the frosting, put the butter in a large bowl and beat until soft and fluffy.
Add the icing sugar a bit at a time (or you will disappear in a puff of sugary smoke!) and beat together. Add the vanilla. If it feels too firm, add a splash of milk to make it a smoother paste.
Add the topping to a piping bag with a nozzle of your choice (you might need to help with this as it’s super fiddly and messy) and pipe circles of icing on top of each cake.
Cover the top with whichever sprinkles you like.
We were making cakes for a Halloween/bonfire party this week so made these beauties.
The ghost cakes are an idea I took from Captured By Lucy’s blog when I saw her idea for simple ghostly bites. We just added them as toppers to our cupcakes.
The purple cakes (we did orange ones too) just had food colouring added to the frosting and then we added chocolate drops on top, which look a little like spikes.
And the green cakes you can see in the background are Snot Cakes my friend made (Krispie cakes with green food dye! Brilliant)