As more and more people are becoming increasingly aware, October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. I think in this day and age pretty much every single person knows at least one person that at some point in their life has been affected by cancer in some form or another – whether it be personally, a family member, friend or colleague. Since it is such a good cause – and one that is important to me, a week ago before heading back to Scotland I decided to invite some girlfriends round for a play date, lunch and some sparkly pink cupcakes to mark the occasion.
I stuck to my standard fail-proof recipe from the Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook for Vanilla cupcakes that I topped with light and fluffy Vanilla Buttercream Icing that I coloured a beautiful girly pink and of course in my true style, finished each cupcake with a sparkly sprinkle of edible glitter!
Pink Vanilla Cupcakes
Makes 12 cupcakes
120g plain or all-purpose flour
140g caster or berry sugar
1 ½ tsp baking powder
a pinch of salt
40g unsalted butter, softened
½ tsp vanilla extract
250g icing sugar
80g unsalted butter, softened
few drops vanilla extract
pink food colouring
edible pink glitter (optional)
Preheat your oven to 170C/ 325F/ GM 3 and line a cupcake tin with medium sized paper cases.
Place the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and butter into the bowl of a KitchenAid (or other freestanding mixer) and using the paddle attachment mix slowly until everything is combined and you have a sandy consistency (if you don't have a KitchenAid use a hand-held electric beater). While the mixer is running, slowly pour in half of the milk and mix until it's just incorporated. Add the egg to the remaining milk along with the vanilla and continue beating until it's mixed in. Scrape down the sides of the bowl to make sure everything is properly mixed but be careful not to over beat the mixture.
Evenly spoon the cake mixture into the cupcake cases and bake for 20-25 minutes until the sponge bounces back when touched (with my oven 22 minutes works perfectly every time) and a skewer comes out clean when put into the center of the cake. Leave to cool for a few minutes then transfer the cupcakes onto a wire rack.
While the cupcakes are cooling make the icing. Sift the icing sugar into the bowl of a free-standing mixture or large bowl, then add the butter and beat on a low setting until it comes together. Turn the speed up a little and continue beating until it is well mixed and there are no lumps. Turn it back down to low then add the milk, vanilla and a touch of pink colouring. Mix until it is well combined and smooth, then turn up to a higher setting and beat for roughly 5 minutes until the icing is light and fluffy.
Once the cakes have completely cooled ice them with the buttercream icing then sprinkle over some glitter if using and serve with plenty of cups of tea!