Amy-Beth Ellice's toffee apple cupcakes
17-year-old Amy-Beth Ellice is Britain’s youngest female published cookery author.
For the cupcakes:
- 175g (6oz) butter
- 175g (6oz) caster sugar
- 175g (6oz) self-raising flour
- 3 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
For the filling:
- Toffee apple jam (page 150)
- For the toffee sauce:
- 110g (4oz) light muscovado sugar
- 4 tbsp golden syrup
- 110g (4oz) butter
- 4 tbsp double cream
For the toffee buttercream:
- ¼ vanilla pod, seeds only
- 225g (8oz) butter
- 450g (1lb) icing sugar
- 2 tbsp toffee sauce
- ¼ tsp vanilla extract
You will need:
- 12 lolly sticks
- Save the vanilla pod
- Prepare the toffee apple jam (page 150).
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/350°F/gas mark 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tray with paper cupcake or muffin cases.
- Put the butter, caster sugar, eggs and vanilla extract into the bowl of a free-standing electric mixer (or you can use a handheld electric whisk and mixing bowl). Sift in the flour, lifting your sieve quite high to incorporate air, and beat for 1–2 minutes until light and creamy.
- Divide the mixture evenly between the paper cases and bake in the oven for 25 minutes or until golden and well risen and a skewer inserted into one of the cakes comes out clean. Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Once cooled, make a small cut to the tip of a piping bag with scissors. Turn the top half of the bag inside out, and use a spatula to fill it with the toffee apple jam.
- Using an apple corer, make a hole in the centre of the top of each cupcake, being careful not to push the corer through the bottom of the cake.
- Squeeze enough toffee apple jam to fill the hole you have made in each cupcake.
To make the toffee sauce:
- Melt the sugar, syrup and butter in a small saucepan and slowly bring to the boil.
- Reduce the heat and simmer for about 3 minutes, or until thick.
To make the toffee buttercream:
- Slice the vanilla pod in half lengthwise and scrape out the seeds. Save the seeds, and set the pod aside.
- Beat the butter in the bowl of a free-standing electric mixer on medium speed (or you can use a handheld electric whisk and mixing bowl) until creamy.
- Add the vanilla seeds and mix for a few seconds on medium speed.
- In a separate bowl, sift the icing sugar.
- Add the icing sugar to the butter mixture on low speed until it begins to incorporate.
- Warm the toffee sauce (make sure it is warm not hot).
- Add 2 tbsp of the warmed toffee sauce and vanilla extract, and beat at medium speed until fully incorporated.
- Spoon the toffee buttercream into a piping bag fitted with a plain nozzle and swirl it on top of the cupcakes.
- Drizzle with the remaining gleaming, melted and cooled toffee sauce. Transform your cupcakes into toffee apples by inserting a lolly stick into the centre of each cupcake.
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