ORANGE CUPCAKES with Marmalade icing for a Grumpy Day
2 whole oranges, divided. Try not to buy bitter oranges. Blood oranges may be useful to squeeze out frustration.
8 oz butter, melted. Use the fire of your righteous anger to melt the butter if a pot isn't handy.
3 whole eggs. Plus an addiational three to reak therapeutically by throwing at the wall.
8 oz suger. Add more sugar if life needs a little sweetening.
8 oz self-raising four
3 tbsp marmalade
3 tbsp orange zest
Multiply all ingredients by four to get too many cupcakes.
Preheat the oven to 350°F/gas mark 4. Butter cake tins.
Chop one orange - yes, skin and all - into chunks and place in your mixer with the melted butter, eggs and sugar. Mix on high until well combined and the satisfying noise of the mixer makes you feel a bit better. Pour the mix into a bowl with the flour and whack repeatedly with a wooden spoon until subdued.
Bake in the oven for 50 minutes. Allow to cool for five minutes in the tin, then turn out on to a wire rack to cool completely. Spread marmalade on the top. Attempt to rediscover zest.
LEMON getting what you want CUPCAKES
4 oz self-raising flour, sifted
1 tsp baking powder
4 oz softened butter
4 oz caster sugar
2 large eggs
grated zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1 lemon
2 oz icing sugar
2 tsps water
1 tsp lemon juice
Preheat oven to 325°F/gas mark 3. Greas loaf tin. Sift flour and baking powder, then add all the other ingredients and beat well, or use a hand-held mixer. Spoon into loaf tin.
This is the important bit:
Cook for twenty minutes. This is not quite long enough. The cake should be yellow, not brown, but not damp inside. Salmonella poisoning is rarely useful for getting what you want.
While the cake is still warm, apply icing. The icing should react to the warm cake and separate slightly, oozing into the pores of the cake itself. It should appear almost translucent.
Now, to all intens and purposes, your cake will look like an ugly disaster. When people see your lemon cake they will feel sorry for you. They will sneer at your poor baking skills and take a piece because they feel sorry for you. Then they will taste the soft moist spongy flesh of your cake imbued with lemon icing. Their eyes will pop open with delight. And then, they will do anything you want.
STRABERRY CUPCAKES (without Meringue buttercream)
for 24 cupcakes:
250 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
250 g caster sugar
250 g self-raising flour
4 tbsp milk (whole or semi-skimmed, not skimmed)
6 - 8 tsp strawberry jam
Preheat the oven to 190°C/fan oven 170°C/gas mark 5.
Beat together the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs, flour and milk and beat until well combined and smooth. Spoon the mixture evenly into the 24 paper cases.
Spoon a little jam on to each cake and, using a coctail stick, swirl the jam into the batter.
Bake for 15 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.
The meringue buttercream recipe will follow as soon as tried!