Tuesday, December 14, 2010
I've been spending a lot of time on myself. The time I spent in Japan forced me to stay away from the Internet and I loved the separation. It was refreshing - liberating, even - and it was high time. Life shouldn't revolve around Blogging, Tweeting and Facebooking (in that order).
Since the school hols are not going to last forever, I am taking the chance to live it up! I have been reading, exercising, taking my children out, chilling with friends, pampering myself with all the beauty stuff I bought from Japan, and yes, SLEEPING! La dolce vita. :)
But the other day, my daughter suddenly asked for cake. Cake? Why the sudden request? Well, she said, you haven't baked any in a while.
So, I cleared the cobwebs from my poor, neglected oven (I haven't been in the kitchen in a long, long time) and baked these adorable Chocolate Cupcake Ice-creams. Thankfully, they turned out fine. I haven't lost it. Not yet.
(by Donna Hay)
For the chocolate cupcakes
- 125g butter, softened
- 1/2 cup (125ml) milk
- 3/4 cup (165g) caster (superfine) sugar
- 100g dark chocolate, melted
- 2 eggs
- 16 storebought flat base ice-cream cones*
- 1 1/4 cups (190g) plain (all-purpose) flour
- 80g dark chocolate, extra, chopped
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 16 glace cherries (I opted for raspberries)
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
For the chocolate butter cream icing
- 250g butter, softened
- 2 cups (320g) icing (confectioner's) sugar mixture, sifted
- 1/2 cup (50g) cocoa powder, sifted
- 2 tablespoons milk
I deliberately made this one with less frosting, so that you can see a hint of cake peeking out.
1. Preheat oven to 160°C (320°F). Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat until light and creamy. Gradually add the eggs and beat well after each addition. Sift over the flour, baking powder and cocoa and beat until combined. Fold through the milk and stir in the chocolate. Place the ice-cream cones on a baking tray and place a piece of the extra chocolate in the base of each cone. Spoon the cupcake mixture into the cones* and bake for 20–25 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer. Allow to cool.
* You need to fill the cones up quite a bit. Leave about 1cm to 1.5cm gap from the rim. Be careful not to have any batter drip onto the outside or it will burn.
Strictly NO sprinkles for me, and I am glad Donna Hay's recipe called for glacé cherries. Just because they are baked in ice-cream cones doesn't mean they have to look juvenile. I used Valrhona chocolate for these cupcakes, for crying out loud, and I have got to be NUTS to ruin it all with s-p-r-i-n-k-l-e-s. Good grief, no. Raspberries it will be.
2. To make the chocolate butter cream icing, place the butter in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for 6–8 minutes or until pale and creamy. Add the icing sugar mixture, cocoa powder and milk and beat for a further 6 minutes or until light and creamy. Pipe the icing onto the cupcakes using a star-shaped nozzle and top with the glacé cherries to serve. Makes 16.
Oh, and speaking of raspberries ... every time I see them, I think of the Ispahan. :) I can't help but share this gorgeous Ladurée 2011 calendar I got from Japan. It came as a free gift with a fashion magazine.
This is my favourite page (and month) - December! I am going to keep it as a momento.