Recipe | (not so) hi-hat cupcakes

For Christmas my aunty and uncle got me this great little Swedish recipe book and baking gear. Famed to be the Nigella of Sweden, I was pretty excited to get stuck in to Leila Lindholm’s book. My new mixing spoon at the ready I was keen to get started. This book is great if you are aiming to serve lots of people. It is anything but under generous with its estimated servings.

This recipe is meant to make 12 cupcakes, well 12 cupcakes and a small cake later, I still had enough to lick… uhm… I mean spoon from the bowl gracefully.

So here’s the recipe, with a few tips to ensure the hats are high!

Chocolate cupcake mixture

  • 3 free range eggs
  • 225 g (8 oz) caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla sugar
  • 50 g (2 oz) unsalted butter
  • 100 ml (3 1/2 fl oz) sour cream, but I prefer creme fraiche
  • 2 tablespoons cold coffee (good quality, preferably not instant)
  • 210 g (7 1/2 oz) plain flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 4 tablespoons good quality cocoa powder
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 100 g (4 oz) good quality dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids)

Meringue Topping

  • 6 organic egg whites
  • 850 g (1 3/4 lb) caster sugar (do not be tempted to under use the sugar, this creates the not so hi-hatted cupcakes)
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla sugar

Chocolate Coating

  • 350 g (12 oz) good quality dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids)
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil

Chocolate Cupcakes

  1. Preheat the oven to 175C/350F/gas 4.
  2. Beat together the eggs, sugar and vanilla sugar until pale and fluffy.
  3. Melt the butter, add the sour cream and coffee and blend with the egg mixture.
  4. Mix together the flour, baking powder, cocoa powder and salt and carefully fold into the mixture.
  5. Chop the chocolate coarsely and melt it in a bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Once all melted add to the mixture.
  6. Put paper cases in a muffin tin and pour in the mixture until the cases are two-thirds full.
  7. Bake in the centre of the oven for about 15 minutes. Leave to cool.

Meringue Topping

  1. In a heatproof bowl mix together the egg whites, caster sugar and lemon juice. Beat by hand for about 1 minute until fluffy.
  2. Rest the bowl over a pan of boiling water. Beat until the sugar crystals have dissolved and the mixture has a consistency as fluffy as meringue. You should see the trail from the whisk in the foam.
  3. Remove the bowl from the pan and beat the vanilla sugar into the foam. Use a hand-held electric beater to mix the meringue for a few minutes until it is thick and cool.
  4. Put the meringue in a piping bag with a round nozzle and pipe the meringue on top of the cupcakes spirals. Leave about in 1 cm (1/2 in) around the edges.
  5. Leave to set in the refrigerator.

Chocolate coating

  1. Chop the chocolate and melt it with vegetable oil in a bowl set over a pan of simmering water.
  2. Pour the chocolate into a small bowl and leave to cool.
  3. Take the cupcakes out of the fridge and dip each peak in the chocolate. Brush on additional chocolate if there are any gaps.
  4. Leave to cool and set on a plate in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.

Even though my own didn’t quite match the heights of Leila’s they tasted bloomin’ delicious!


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