Baking with Stork – Chocolate and Orange Cupcakes

#unileverkitchen Chocolate & Orange Cupcake

On Monday I along with eleven other bloggers spent most of the day in the Unilever Kitchen.

First thing was we had the opportunity to learn some interesting facts about tea; this session was presented by the lovely Jane Pettigrew. Afterwards we met Marco Pierre White who shared with us his hints and tips on cooking (I will write about this part at a later date). And finally we did some baking with Sue Batty, a Stork expert baker.

The whole day was fantastic but the baking part was the most fun, just simply because it was free form baking. We were all supposed to bake cupcakes but specifically their flavourings and decorations were totally up to us.

We were provided with some recipe sheets but I don’t think anyone used them; everyone was just running wild with their flavour combinations and choices of icing.

#unileverkitchen Baking with Sue Batty

I believe all the cupcakes were based on this basic recipe, which will make 12.

  • 115g Stork tub
  • 115g caster sugar
  • 140g self-raising flour
  • 2 eggs; medium size

The rest is up to you 🙂

I decided on chocolate and orange cupcakes but as I have never used orange blossom water before I erred on the side of caution and so didn’t put enough in my mix so my cupcakes ended up being chocolate with only a slight hint of orange.

I had to change the basic recipe as stated above to be suitable for my creation. I’ve used:

  • 115g Stork tub
  • 115g caster sugar
  • 115g self-raising flour
  • 3 eggs; medium size
  • 2tbs of good quality cocoa powder
  • 50g of crushed dark chocolate
  • 5ml of orange blossom water

+ Decorations

  • 50g of melted dark chocolate and 50g of melted milk chocolate

To make this recipe work even better Sue suggested some small changes – add 1/2tsp of baking powder, this will help with the raising as the cocoa powder makes them quite heavy and then add an additional 5ml of orange blossom water, to achieve a more orangey flavour. The zest of an orange added to the mix would have also elevated them to the next level.

Method:

Place all cupcake ingredients except for the crushed chocolate into a mixing bowl and mix with a wooden spoon until everything is just combined. Add the crushed chocolate and spoon the finished mixture into 12 paper muffin cases.

Bake in a preheated oven at 180C for 15-20 minutes or until soft and firm to the touch.

Remove from the oven and place on a cooling rack.

Melt 100g of chocolate and slowly pour over your cupcakes.

Easy peasy lemon squeezy… as they say.

And if you are wondering what the other bloggers baked here is a selection of some of their lovely cupcakes baked on the day.

Lime & Dark Chocolate Cupcakes baked by Kirsty from Hijacked By Twins
Lime & Dark Chocolate Cupcakes baked by Kirsty from Hijacked By Twins
Turkish Delight & White Chocolate Cupcake baked by Rose from Freycob
Turkish Delight & White Chocolate Cupcake baked by Rose from Freycob
Lime & White Chocolate Cupcakes baked by Lucy from Supergolden Bakes
Lime & White Chocolate Cupcakes baked by Lucy from Supergolden Bakes
Oreo & Malteser Cupcakes baked by Amy from She Cooks She Eats
Oreo & Malteser Cupcakes baked by Amy from She Cooks She Eats
Strawberry & Chocolate Chip with Lime Cream cheese Frosting Cupcakes baked by Leyla from Motherhood Diaries
Strawberry & Chocolate Chip with Lime Cream cheese Frosting Cupcakes baked by Leyla from Motherhood Diaries
Still waiting to be claimed
Still waiting to be claimed
Still waiting to be claimed
Still waiting to be claimed
hmm I wonder who baked these ones... :-)
hmm I wonder who baked these ones… 🙂

I didn’t manage to ninja a sample of all cupcakes nor did I manage in the hussle an bussle of the day to take photos of everyone’s creations, so I do apologise if I missed yours.

Also I would like to send a big thank you to Rose @Freycob who investigated which cupcake belongs to which blogger.

Thank you for the great day guys!

It was a pleasure to meet you all!

Autumn Cupcakes for #bettabakeoff

my autumn cupcakes for #bettabakeoff

Betta Living in celebration of National Cupcake Week have challenged bloggers to come up with an innovative and interesting variation. So with the nights’ drawing in and the temperatures definitely on a downward trend culinary thoughts wander towards comfort foods and homely foods. In light of this I would like to offer my take on an Autumnal Cupcake.

Turn your oven on to 180C and let warm up

Prepare your cupcake trays and line them with paper forms.

Ingredients for the cupcakes:

  • 2 large carrots; grated
  • 3 large eggs
  • 200ml sunflower oil
  • 220g brown sugar
  • 250g plain flour
  • 1.5tsp baking powder
  • 0.5tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1tsp cinnamon
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • 0.5tsp ground ginger
  • 0.5tsp ground nutmeg
  • A handful almonds; chopped
  • Pinch of salt

Ingredients for the decorations:

  • 200ml whipped cream
  • 125g mascarpone cheese
  • 1.5tblsp icing sugar
  • 1 large carrot
  • 250ml water
  • 220g caster sugar
  • Orange food colouring

Method:

Sieve the flour into a large mixing bowl and add the baking powder and the bicarbonate of soda.

Now add the spices (cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger) and the pinch of salt and mix well.

In a second bowl gentle whisk the eggs together mix in the oil; sugar, grated carrots and vanilla extract, you are wanting the ingredients to be just combined.

Now add your wet ingredients to your dry ones and throw in the chopped almonds and combine gently.

Spoon into your paper cupcake forms, you should have enough mixture for 18 cupcakes.

Place into your preheated oven for 20-25minutes or until golden brown and a wooden toothpick comes out clean when stuck into your cupcake.

Turn the oven down to 110C.

1. Autumn Cupcakes for #bettabakeoff

Allow the cupcakes to cool as we get ready to start creating the decorations.

2. Autumn Cupcakes for #bettabakeoff

Wash your carrot and peel it and dry with some kitchen roll. With a sharp knife you can turn half the carrot into julienne pieces and the other half into wafer thin leaves, or if you are like us who have good but not stunning knife skills then drag out your Oxo Chef’s Mandolin Slicer (other makes are available) and it’s done in seconds.

Add the sugar to the water in a heavy based saucepan and put on a low heat. Stir until all the sugar has dissolved. Add all the pre-cut carrot pieces to the pan and boil gently for 10-15 minutes.

Sieve the carrots to remove the excess water and place on a baking tray that is lined with baking paper, space them out so they each have lots of space. Place in the oven 20-25minutes.

3. Autumn Cupcakes for #bettabakeoff

Remove them from the oven and allow to cool. Once cool you want to roll the leaf shaped pieces around something like a skewer to help form the curl shape. The julienne pieces you want to tie together into knots. Once all the pieces are formed pop them back into the oven for another 20 minutes, we are wanting them to be very dry.

Whip the cream until stiff peaks form and then add then fold in the mascarpone cheese and the sugar. Split your cream if desired so that different colours can be added, we have created a nice orange cream to accentuate the cupcake base.

So we should now have 18 lovely baked cupcakes, a tray of carrot decorations and a bowl of topping.

Now all that is left to do is find your piping bag and let your imagination run riot.

Have fun and enjoy!

4. Autumn Cupcakes for #bettabakeoff7. Autumn Cupcakes for #bettabakeoff6. Autumn Cupcakes for #bettabakeoff