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Strawberry Cupcakes



Fresh English Strawberries, nothing says summer better than these brilliant sweet  & fresh garden berries.  We grow our own, and they are somewhat smaller than the ones you will see in the shops, with an exemplary flavour.  Almost condensed and so sweet and delicious!  They are coming fast and furious at the moment, due to all of this lovely hot weather we are having and so I thought I would bake some Strawberry Cupcakes with some of them!  These are the perfect bake to end the month of June on! 




Its a recipe which I have adapted from a cookery book entitled "Screen Doors & Sweet Teas! by Martha Hall Foose.  I love this book and don't use it near often enough. I spied it in my book case the other day and pulled it and these lovely cupcakes immediately caught my eye. 



It also gave me the perfect excuse to use some of those Dr Oetker cake sprinkles I was sent the other day, not to mention some of the pink food colour gel for the frosting.



The frosting is a cream cheese butter frosting, and actually didn't call for any food colouring. The cupcakes in the book had brilliant pink frosting . . .  but in all honesty mine did not. (I strongly suspect that some literary licence was taken with the food photography for the book and they did add colouring for presentation purposes, and so I did too!) Even so, I probably could have used more as they were only pale pink.


It is a lovely frosting however and quite different as you use mashed berries cooked together with some lemon juice and strawberry jam, so you really do get a lovely berry flavour which is really nice and a bit of a surprise when you bite into them!


I find the cream cheese over here in the UK to be a bit more liquid than the American variety, so try to drain it if you can, and you may also need a bit more icing sugar to get the right consistency for spreading.  It also helps if you chill it for a while.


I dug out my favourite cupcake papers for these.  A variety of florals by Eddingtons.  They are nice and thick and very pretty.



I could have used brighter sprinkles, but these Glamour and Sparkle Dr Oetker ones were just perfect for these. I didn't want them to look overly garish. 




A mix of mashed fresh berries and orange zest is mixed into the cake batter, so you have a lovely berry flavour throughout along with little bits of berries. 




Its a buttermilk cake batter also, which makes for really lovely and moist cupcakes. 




I couldn't resist having a bite.  They are so delicious!  Dangerous even.  I cut the recipe in half because there are only two of us, so I made 12 of them.  After one bite I knew it was a bad idea to keep 12 of them in this house, so I immediately sent six next door. 



There were NO complaints.  But raves!  I love it when that happens. 




These are the perfect way to celebrate the delicious taste of British Strawberry Season I think!  Yum!! 



*Strawberry Cupcakes*
Makes 24
 

One of the things I love most about strawberry season. 


For the cakes:
350g cake flour (2 1/2 cups)
(see my recipe below for how to make your own)
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
80ml buttermilk (1/3 cup)
60ml canola oil (1/4 cup)
1/2 tsp almond extract
1 tsp vanilla extract
125g butter, at room temperature
285g granulated sugar (1 1/2 cups)
2 large free range eggs
200g mashed fresh or frozen strawberries (1 cup, mashed)
1 tsp freshly grated orange zest 




For the frosting:
100g chopped fresh or frozen strawberries (1/2 cup)
2 TBS strawberry jam
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 (250g) pack cream cheese, softened (8 ounces)
375g butter, softened (1 1/2 cups)
520g icing sugar, sifted (4 cups)




Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4.  Line 24 muffin cups with paper liners.  Set aside.
 
Sift the flour together with the soda and salt.  Set aside.  Whisk together the buttermilk, oil and both extracts. Set aside.  Mix the mashed berries for the cakes with the orange zest. Set aside.

Using an electric whisk, beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.  Beat in the buttermilk mixture a bit at a time.  Once it has all been beaten in, beat together for a further minute at medium speed. Beat in the flour mixture, on low, just until combined.  Stir in the mashed berry mixture.  Spoon into the prepared muffin cups, filling them only 2/3 full.

Bake for 18 to 20 minutes until risen, golden brown, and a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. The tops should spring back when lightly touched. Cool in the tin for 10 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the frosting, combine the berries, jam and lemon juice in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Cook and stir for 5 minutes, until the jam is melted and the berries are soft.  Press any larger pieces with the back of a spoon to make sure they are well mashed.  Let cool completely.

Using the paddle attachment of your mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter at medium speed until creamy.  Add the confectioners sugar, slowly, at low speed until thoroughly combined.  Blend in the strawberries, also at low speed.   Spread onto the cupcakes when they are completely cold.
 
To make your own Cake flour:
Measure out the flour for your recipe.  For every 140g/1 cup of flour remove 2 TBS and replace it with 2 TBS of cornflour (corn starch). Sift 5 to 6 times.



I really hope you bake these delicious cupcakes.  With their double whammy of beautiful strawberry flavour your family is sure to love them!  They would be perfect for your summer cookouts and holiday celebrations this weekend!  (Happy Canada Day and 4th of July!)  Bon Appetit! 



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Marie Rayner
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4 comments:

  1. I bet they are wonderful.As I child my mom made a cherry cake w/ a mix and I loved it:)
    I have that book..it was a gift from a blogging friend years and years ago..that disappeared..as some do:(Those sprinkles are adorb too.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Monique. I think think this is the first recipe I have cooked from the book. I am going through all my books deciding which to keep and which to get rid of. If I haven't used them at all, they are out the door! I remember the cherry cake mix and it was delicious! xo

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  2. Garry just went to pick up our strawberries from the Farmers Market! What perfect timing,, I haven't made anything quite like this before and the frosting is very unique!

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    Replies
    1. I hope you like them Laurie! We did! What great timing! xo

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