Lemon Meringue Cupcakes

Lemon Meringue Cupcakes

Hiya,

Summer is just flying by and I can’t believe the mornings are already feeling a little bit crisper, I’m not ready for the cold weather but I have already started planning Septembers posts and they are going to be all bright & cheerful, so there is something to look forward to.

Tuesday 15 August is National Lemon Meringue Pie day which I love to celebrate but I decided to mix it up a little so I have a Lemon Meringue Cupcake recipe for you instead. They don’t keep well so I’m sharing a half a recipe but if you’d like the full one just pop me a message and I’ll be glad to share.

Lemon Meringue Cupcakes

113g butter (softened)

113g caster sugar

2 eggs

1tsp vanilla extract

113g plain flour

1tsp baking powder (heaped)

Line a muffin tin with 9 paper liners.

Cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.

Add the eggs and mix in well.

Add vanilla extract and mix.

Sieve and combine the flour and baking powder. Add this to the mixing bowl and mix until well incorporated.

Soon into the prepared muffin tray. I always weigh mine and put 50g of mixture into each wrapper.

Bake at 175°C for 20 mins.

Remove from the oven & cool for 5 mins.

Meringue topping

2 egg whites

50g caster sugar

Pinch of salt

Pour the egg whites into a clean mixing bowl and start to beat. Add a pinch of salt.

Once foamy slowly start to add your sugar while the mixer is going. Continue to beat until you reach stiff peaks or the mixture won’t move if you turn the bowl upside down.

Spoon into a piping bag and put to the side.

Turn the oven temperature up to 230°C.

Hollow out your cupcakes and fill with lemon curd.

Pipe the meringue onto the cupcakes.

Place in the oven for 5 mins until the meringue looks lightly toasted.

Allow to cool before enjoying within 2 days.

Cxx

Coffee Meringue Dessert Stack

Coffee Meringue Dessert Stack

Hiya!

I have a very short post for you tonight as I am currently on holiday in South Africa.

There are so many very beautiful miniature cakes around that I decided to make an adult gluten free version. Pastel meringue disks layered with coffee cream!

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Meringue Recipe

3 egg whites

Caster sugar (double the weight of the egg whites)

1tsp vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 180°C, weigh your egg whites into your mixing bowl and allow to warm to room temperature.

Weigh double the amount of caster sugar as the weight of your eggs in a heat proof bowl and place in the oven for 5 mins.

Start to beat your egg whites and when they look foamy remove the sugar from the oven and turn the temp down to 100°C.

Spoon the hot sugar slowly into the egg whites while beating, 1 tablespoon at a time.

Add vanilla extract.

Once you reach stiff peak stage (short pointy peaks that do not fall back on themselves) stop and divide the mixture into 4 smaller bowls.

Choose 4 gel food colours and start to colour your meringue. The colour will fade slightly with baking, so you may want to make it slightly brighter than you want them to turn out.

I drew round circles (about 4″ wide) on my baking paper, turned the paper upside down and pipped 3 circles of meringue in each colour. I kept the pink for the tops of the meringue and pipped these with a 1M Wilton piping tip to look like flowers.

Bake at 100°C for 1hour 30mins.

Allow to cool completely before starting the filling.

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Coffee Cream Filling

250ml whipping cream

1tsp caster sugar

1tsp instant coffee (heaped)

Pour the cream into a bowl to whip.

Add caster sugar and coffee.

Start whipping, once it is thick enough that it doesn’t slide when you tip the bowl you are done but be careful not to over whip of you’ll end up with coffee butter!

Place a tip in a piping bag and full it with the coffee cream.

Pipe a circle of coffee cream onto your first meringue disk and then stack and fill the rest. There is a piping & stacking video on Instagram and Facebook.

Once you’ve stacked them, they will need to be kept in the fridge and eaten with 2 hours before the meringue begins to dissolve with the moisture from the cream.

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Enjoy as a light summer dessert and think about me as it is the middle of winter in South Africa!

xx

Chocolate Fudge Dragon Cake

Chocolate Fudge Dragon Cake

Hiya!

Saturday was my son’s 5th birthday! I know everyone says it but where did the time go?! When he was born he weighed 2.9kg or 6.4lb and arrived on his due date! I read that only 5% of babies arrive on their due dates. Crazy huh!

Over the years he has had a rainbow cake, a sculpted dinosaur cake (never again), a ninja turtle cake and a lego cake. This year he asked for a dragon cake, so together we designed his cake. I always prefer buttercream to sugarpaste so I showed him pictures of the gorgeous unicorn cakes around at the moment. We decided on a 3 layer chocolate fudge cake with marshmallow swiss meringue buttercream and raspberry jam between the layers. Dragon wings, tail, feet, teeth, eyes and spikes were all made from french meringue. Although it could have done with a 4th layer of cake to make it a little taller, I think he’s rather cute and my son LOVED it!

A little note for anyone who thinks this looks very time intensive. As I am a Mum and my time is limited with looking after 2 littlies, I took 3 days to make this cake. Meringue lasts the longest so I made this on the Wednesday and stored them in a airtight container. I baked the cakes on the Thursday, once they were cool I wrapped them in cling film until I was ready to decorate the cake. On Friday I made the buttercream and decorated the cake for Saturday.

Meringue

For all the details on making meringues see my Meringue Hearts blog post.

Here I used 4 large egg whites which I weighed and then doubled the amount of caster sugar used.

Once the meringue was ready and had no more sugar grains, I removed 2 TBS of white meringue before colouring the rest yellow.

All templates were hand drawn by myself after comtemplating some of my sons toy dragons. I used a small piping bag with a small whole cut to pipe the teeth and eyes and then used a cocktail stick to make the points of the teeth more defined.

I painted yellow stripes of gel food colouring into my bigger piping bag to give a brighter colour to the tail, wings and spikes. For the details on the wings I used the smaller piping bag and to attach the wings to the cake I added 2 cocktail sticks to each wing.

Meringue03

As I wanted the meringue very dry with no lovely gooey middle I baked the eyes and teeth, which were very thin, for 45 mins. The wings, feet and tail I baked for 1.5 hours and the spikes were 1 hour as they could still be a little gooey.

Once cool I stored them in an airtight container until I decorated the cake.

Chocolate Fudge Cake (Makes three 6″ round cakes)

 

263g self-raising flour

3 3/4 TBS cocoa powder

1 1/2 tsp bicarb

225g caster sugar

3 eggs

225ml sunflower oil

225ml milk

2tsp vanilla extract

2 TBS tinned caramel (the really thick type)

Preheat the oven to 160°C with a fan.

Line your cake tins with parchment paper, it makes it so much easier to get the cakes out of the tins!

Sieve flour, cocoa and bicarb into a large bowl and stir in caster sugar.

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In a medium sized bowl combine oil, milk,  vanilla extract, caramel and eggs. Whisk together well making sure the caramel breaks down.

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Add liquid to dry ingredients and mix well, the mixture will be quite runny.

Divide cake batter into cake tins, I weigh each tin as I’m pouring the mixture in. I only have two 6″ cake tins so I weighed out the cake batter and kept a third aside. Once the first two cakes were cooked I quickly cleaned a tin and filled it with the mixture that had been waiting. There was no difference in the outcome of the third baked cake but I was very gentle with the mixture when I poured it into the tin as the bicarb had already started working and making bubbles.

Bake for 30-35 mins. Check the center of the cake with a cocktail stick before removing from the oven, it should come out clean.

Allow to cool in the tins for 5 mins and then remove to cool on a rack.

Marshmallow Swiss Meringue Buttercream

For all the details on making buttercream see my Swiss Meringue Buttercream vs American Buttercream blog post.

Buttercream ingreds

I used my usual Swiss Meringue Buttercream recipe but flavoured it with 3/4 cup of marshmallow fluff. It was so yummy I think I could have eaten the whole bowl of icing by itself.

I then took a 1/4 out and coloured it yellow and coloured the remainder lime green.

Stack cake

My son loves raspberry jam so I warmed a couple of TBS in the microwave and pushed it through a sieve to ensure there were no seeds left. After leveling each cake layer I started assembling the cake.

Start with a tiny bit of icing on the cake board to keep the first layer of cake in place. I then spread a thin layer of jam onto the cake before covering it in icing. Repeat with your remaining layers although I did not spread jam on the top.

Crumb coat and refrigerate. After an hour remove from the fridge and cover with your decorative layer of icing. I covered the whole cake in green icing and then added blobs of yellow before smoothing the icing with a cake smoother.

I returned the cake to the fridge for another hour before adding the final touches.

Cake back

I hope you love my quirky dragon cake as much as my son did and if I’ve inspired you please tag #sprinkesinthewild so that I can see too!

Cxx

 

 

Meringue Hearts

Meringue Hearts

Hiya!

It’s February this week, so the count down to Valentine’s Day is officially on! I grew up in the 80’s and meringues were a common sight at birthday teas or with a cup of coffee after dinner. They have had a little down time since then with cupcakes making a big song and dance and the world of baking changing a lot.

Meringues have made a big come back recently with the likes of the Meringue Girls and Lucid Sweets making them into art with beautiful bright colours and fancy flavours. They have inspired me and I have made a lot of meringues in the last 3 years. My favourite being watermelon flavoured rainbow meingues. Meringue kisses are very well known but I decided to make them a little bit more romantic, if that is even possible with meringues. So here are my Vanilla Heart Meringues.

Meringues

3 egg whites

Caster sugar

1tsp vanilla extract

Heat your oven to 180°C

Ensure that your mixer bowl and whisk are clean and grease free as meringue will not whip up if there is any water or grease.

Weigh your egg whites and take note of what they weigh.

Weigh your caster sugar in a heat proof bowl. Caster sugar should be double the weight of the egg whites.

Place your caster sugar in the oven at 180°C for 5 mins.

After 5 mins start to whip your egg whites, once white and foamy, take the sugar out the oven and slowly add one tablespoon of sugar at a time while the mixer is going.

Turn the oven down to 100°C.

Once all the sugar is added, scrape down the sides and add 1 tsp of vanilla extract.

Whip for 5 mins and test a little meringue between your fingers, if it still feels grainy whip for another 5 mins. Once it feels smooth add food colouring if you desire and whip it until it is evenly coloured.

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Fill a piping bag with meringue and pipe hearts of about 5cms tall onto a baking tray with parchment paper. I added sprinkles to a few of mine as we all know, I LOVE sprinkles!

Bake at 100°C for 1 hour if you like the middle a little chewy or up to 1,5 hours if you like it all crunchy. Keep an eye on them while in the oven as you may find you have a hot spot at one corner, in which case you could turn the tray after every 30 mins or so.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool before removing from the tray.

meringue-plate

Enjoy with a cup of tea or as dessert with strawberries or wrap them up all pretty as a gift.

Cxx