Strawberry Cupcakes

It’s just after 5.30am here. I’ve been woken up by three fire alarms this evening (the singular joy of a residence tutor) and I decided that it probably wasn’t worth trying to go back to bed now. It’s all light anyway. I’ve had my first coffee and, under normal circumstances, I would make something with a lot of butter in it now, to console myself over the lost sleep. But I’m all out of butter as I am attempting to wind down the contents of my fridge before I leave for the US on Monday night. So instead I’ll tell you about these summery strawberry cupcakes I made on the weekend for a friends birthday. I made them as a gift (cupcakes are good for gifts).

I bought strawberries at the farmer’s market on Wednesday and some were beautiful – red and juicy – but others were still slightly under ripe and so I decided to turn them into these cupcakes. It is summer after all (even if it’s not actually warm and sunny), and strawberry eating is almost compulsory. I topped the cupcakes with cream cheese icing, to add a slight tang to the sweetness. They were all eaten (except the ones I had left over which couldn’t fit into the box)!

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The recipe is adapted from one in The Primrose Bakery Book. Their recipe used raspberries and had a coconut buttercream but you know, I hate coconut and I didn’t have any raspberries so I used the basic recipe as a jumping off point. The result was a sweet, strawberry flavoured, slightly pink cake with bright white icing. I garnished them with fresh strawberries. My recipe made 18 cupcakes and not the said 12. I’m not sure if this is because my tray is smaller than normal or if I fill the trays less generously? Who knows. No one ever has any issues with extra cake as far as I know.

Strawberry Cupcakes

Adapted from The Primrose Bakery Book

225g unsalted butter

225g golden caster sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

4 eggs

210g plain flour

2 tsp baking powder

25g cornflour

180g strawberries

Preheat the oven to 180C. Line a muffin tin with cupcake cases.

Cream together the butter and sugar until whitened and fluffy.

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Add in the vanilla and then the eggs, one at a time. The mixture will split. Fear not.

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Mix together the flour, baking powder and cornflour. Fold into the butter mixture in two goes. Roughly chop the strawberries – I did this in a blender, just blending them lightly, you don’t want it totally puréed.

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Fold the strawberries into the mixture. Spoon into the cupcake cases and bake for about 15 minutes, until the cupcakes are risen and browned and spring back when touched.

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Allow to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before cooling completely on a wire rack.

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Ice with cream cheese icing once completely cold.

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