The Perfect Vanilla Cupcakes


What with it being Mother's Day this weekend, I thought it would be another great opportunity for a baking post! I'm still working my way through The Hummingbird Bakery book and have yet to find a recipe that hasn't had great results. Vanilla cupcakes are simple and delicious and can be customised and decorated in a number of really fun ways.

I chose to have mine in red and pink cases with pink vanilla buttercream and decorated with sugar roses from Waitrose and an assortment of pretty sprinkles I picked up from Sainsbury's. So, onto the recipe!

To make 12 cupcakes, you will  need:

  • 120g plain flour
  • 140g caster sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
  • a pinch of salt
  • 40g unsalted butter at room temperature
  •  120ml whole milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the buttercream:
  • 250g icing sugar
  • 80g unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 25ml whole milk 
  • a couple of drops of vanilla extract
  • Food colouring of your choice

Preheat the oven to 170°C (325°C) and prepare a 12 hole cupcake tray lined with paper cases.

Put the flour,  sugar, baking powder, salt and butter in a bowl and beat until you get a sandy consistency. Pour in half the milk and beat until it is just incorporated.

Next, mix the remaining milk with the egg and vanilla extract in a separate bowl, then pour into the flour mixture. Beat the mixture until everything is incorporated and the mixture is smooth.

Spoon the mixture into the paper cases until they are two thirds full and bake in the oven for 20- 55 minutes, until the cakes are golden in colour and bounce back when touched.

Leave the cakes to cool completely on a wire rack before decorating.

To make the buttercream, beat the icing sugar and butter until it has come together with no lumps. Mix the milk and vanilla extract in a separate bowl and add it gradually to the butter mixture. When it has all been added, mix until the mixture feels light and fluffy, then add a couple of drops of food colouring if desired. Remember, a little goes a long way!

Now you're ready to decorate your cakes however you like! I have to say, I'm a big fan of the sugar roses, I think they look beautiful!

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