Saturday, 19 April 2008

Taste and Create: Strawberry Cupcakes with "Champagne" Glaze

I signed up for Taste and Create for this round and was looking forward to seeing who I was paired up with because looking at the blogs of people who have participated before you can see that there are some fantastic bloggers involved! The email arrived saying who was paired with who and when I saw the name of the blog I was paired with I was initially scared because I've never really made cupcakes before, but then was really excited to be trying something new. I must have read every recipe on Cupcake Project and this one for Strawberry Cupcakes with Champagne Glaze jumped out at me straight away because I had just bought some of the start of the season's local strawberries from a local farm shop. All I needed to do was get some champagne, but instead I went for a slightly cheaper bottle of Cava which seemed to work very well. What was also fun about making cupcakes that Stef described as "perfect for celebrating valentines day" was that they got me more excited about celebrating our 1st wedding anniversary this weekend!!!

These were incredibly tasty. I loved the subtle taste of the strawberry in the cupcake itself, the texture of the crisp glaze was a fantastic contrast to the soft cupcake and the fresh strawberry on top finished it of really well with fresh sweet taste. This made about 24 cupcakes and there was no way I would be able to eat them all as well as the top tier of our wedding cake this weekend, so Rob and I had a few and I took the rest to the church to help cater for the Girls Brigade display last night. They went down a storm and people were asking if there were anymore!!!! So if you're reading this Stef be proud of your creation because it's made lots of people happy and a few even ask for the recipe!

Anyways here's the recipe as Stef wrote it with my edits in italics....

Strawberry cupcakes with champagne glaze

Makes 24

Cupcake Recipe

2 1/2 cups cake flour Seeing as cake flour isn't available in the UK I used plain flour, removed 2.5 tbsp and added 2.5 tbsp corn flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1/3 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup canola oil I couldn't find canola oil so I replaced this with vegetable oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup finely chopped fresh strawberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two standard cupcake pans with 24 paper cupcake liners. Set aside. In a medium bowl, sift together the cake flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar with an electric mixer. Add eggs. Mix until smooth and creamy. Add buttermilk, oil and vanilla. Mix until combined. Add flour mixture to butter mixture. Mix until just combined. Stir in strawberries. Place batter into each cupcake cup filling each half full.

Bake cupcakes for approx. 18-20 minutes. Let cool.

Champagne Glaze Recipe

1 stick butter seeing as butter in the UK isn't measured in cups I looked up a translation which became 1/2 a cup of butter
1 C sugar
1/4 C water
1/4 C Champagne Being cheap I used Cava

Boil butter, sugar, and water for 3 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in champagne and let cool.

When I took the butter, sugar, and water mixture off the stove and mixed the champagne into the hot mixture it was delish and it had a strong champagne flavor. After it cooled on the cupcakes it was still great, but the champagne flavor did become a bit more subtle.

How to Glaze a Cupcake

The trick I learned for glazing a cupcake is dip the cupcake into the pot of glaze and twist the cupcake as you take it out to keep the glaze from dripping off. Coincidentally, dip and twist sounds like a move from my new hip-hop class. I double-dipped (a restaurant faux pas) but very important here to get a nice thick layer of glaze.

Top Cupcake with Strawberries

Once everything cooled and dried, I topped each cupcake with a half a strawberry. While I think these are my prettiest cupcakes yet, it almost seems too easy. I didn't have to mess with piping any icing at all. Adding a strawberry seems to be the baking equivalent to taking a picture of a kid or a dog, so easy to do with almost guaranteed viewer satisfaction.

I really loved these and I'm sure I'll be doing them again and I think I might just have to try making more cupcakes now: thanks for your inspiration Stef!


  1. They look absolutely wonderful! SO lovely and magical. Just right for a tea party methinks.

    AFAIK canola is rapeseed (obviously, couldn't call something rapeseed over there!)

  2. Ruth these are beautiful just loving this post on a great bake :)

    Rosie x

  3. Ruth, WOW these are just beautiful. I love strawberries and champagne ;o)


  4. This is wonderful and I really HATE that I keep forgetting about taste and create. *smacks forehead* Ugh!

  5. Hi Ruth! Your site is looking very good and I like your new profile photo :)

  6. Hey Miss Bliss, they would be perfect for a tea party! I'll have to remember that rapeseed thing, thanks.

    Hey Rosie, thank you! I think my baking is improving!

    Hi Maria, strawberries and champagne do work very well together.

    Hi Pixie, hope you sign up for the next round

    Thanks Maryann, I've been editing a lot on the site recently... just can't leave it alone!

  7. Glad to have introduced you to the world of baking cupcakes! I'm so glad they turned out well! Thanks so much for your comments!

  8. I love how festive they look and can see such a variety of places to take them and have people go "wow...aren't they gorgeous" :)

  9. Thank you for the challenge Stef and for breaking me out of my comfort zone!

    Hey Giz, that seems to have been the reaction at church anyway! Glad u like the look of them

  10. What a GENIUS idea with the glaze! I LOVE IT! That's SOOOO funny too b/c the recipe is exactly the same as the ones i have on my blog minus a cup of berries. :)

    I'm going to have to try this glaze idea!!

  11. Mmm... strawberries and champagne. What else could you want?
    Ann at Redacted Recipes

  12. Hey Katie, I just checked out your cupcakes, they look awesome! Can't wait to see what you do with the glaze!

    Thanks Kate! They tasted fantastic too!

    Hi Ann, I'd want second helpings!!!! lol

  13. Hi Ruth...these look great! Sounds like they are really easy...strawberries are my favorite, right now though it is hard to get good ones!

  14. Hey Deborah, they're very straightforward to make and extremely elegant and delicious!!!! But you're right about finding good strawberries... just need to wait a little longer.

  15. champagne glaze?! mmmm!!!

  16. It was a rather heavenly glaze Jaime!

  17. They came out gorgeous! Yum champagne and strawberries!

  18. Thanks Reeni! They were so tasty!


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