My stand mixer arrived yesterday and I, of course, had to play with it as soon as I got it, so my boyfriend asked me to make filled cupcakes with strawberry filling (as I also bought a cupcake plunger!)
Quick note – I made the strawberry filling as I went along and ended up with quite a bit, but I wouldn’t want to half it as it might not taste right – in which case you can probably make two batches of cupcakes.
You will need:
> Cupcake plunger (or sharp knife to cut out middle of cakes)
> Cupcake tray
> Hand mixer/Stand mixer
> Hand blender/masher
Ingredients for sponge:
> 120g plain flour
> 140g caster sugar
> 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
> 40g butter/margarine
> pinch of salt (if you use unsalted butter)
> 120ml milk
> 1 egg
Ingredients for Strawberry filling:
> 8 large strawberries (plus extra for decorating)
> 8tbsp water
> 3tbsp sugar (but if your strawberries are quite sweet you may need less, best to do this to taste)
> 4 gelatin sheets
Ingredients for Mascarpone frosting:
> 8oz mascarpone cheese
> 1/2 cup of icing sugar (I then added an extra 1/8 as didn’t think it tasted quite right)
> 1 cup double cream
> Preheat the oven to 170 degrees C and line the cupcake tray.
> Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder into a bowl and add the butter. Place the milk and egg in a jug and whisk together with a fork.
> Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder and butter together until it looks like sand.
> Pour the milk & egg mixture in and then mix until well incorporated and when the mixture has a nice smooth consistency.
> Place into the cupcake cases. I have to admit I only managed to get 11, but think I overfilled the cases, it will make 12 if you fill the cases half way. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until sponge is firm to touch and skewer/knife comes out clean.
> Leave to cool. Whilst the cupcakes are cooling you can make the strawberry filling as this needs to cool and set as well.
> Slice the strawberries up and place them into a saucepan. Add the water and then heat gently. Once heated, add the sugar and mix, as I said for these strawberries 3tbsp was plenty, but you should add the sugar to taste.
> Bring to the boil and then turn the heat down to the lowest setting and mash the strawberries. You can either use a hand masher, if you want a filling with chunks in, or use a hand blender which I used because I wanted my filling to be more of a purée.
> Cut the gelatin sheets roughly and put into the mixture, stir until they’ve melted into your mixture.
> When you get to this stage, turn the heat off and pour the mixture into a glass dish. Leave to cool for a bit and then place it in the fridge to finish cooling and set.
> When the mixture has completely set take it out of the fridge and place to one side. Now to use the cupcake plunger! There’s a bit of a knack to it, but it didn’t take long to master! You have to push it straight down quite firmly without wiggling it (otherwise the piece will be too large and the plunger won’t pick it up) you only wiggle it when you bring it out.
> After you’ve taken the middle out of the cupcakes (keep the bits you’ve taken out) you can then put your strawberry filling in. Don’t fill them entirely to the top as you want to cut the piece of cake you’ve removed down to make a topper to go back on the cake.
> Now to make the frosting. Place all the ingredients in a bowl and then whisk them until the mixture is smooth and quite stiff. I piped my cupcakes, so it needs to be a thick enough consistency not to fall out of the nozzle without you squeezing it!
> Pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes (or spoon it on) and then cut the strawberries in half to garnish.
> Here’s the finished product 🙂
> And here’s what they look like cut in half! Happy Baking 🙂