Sunday, 11 August 2013

Dark Chocolate and Raspberry Cupcakes

*Note - as you can tell if you read the introduction, this post is from the very beginning of summer. I just found it in my list of posts, and decided that as I am away, I would post it! This is again a scheduled post as I am still in America.

The weather has finally started getting warmer here (at last!), and we had the first barbecue of the year with my best friend and her family, and my friend and I decided to make cupcakes.

My all time favourite flavour combination is berries with any type of chocolate - especially raspberries or strawberries <3 hence the dark chocolate and raspberry cupcakes, and why the last post was also a type of chocolate and raspberry cupcake! 

The frosting is two-tone raspberry and chocolate frosting, and there's a raspberry in the middle of the cupcakes for a little surprise. These are so easy to make and they taste so good, I had at least three that day.


115g good quality dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids)
85g butter, softened
175g soft brown sugar
2 large eggs, separated
185g plain flour, sifted
3/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
Pinch of salt
250ml milk, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract

In the middle: 24 raspberries

  1. Preheat the oven to 170 C Fan/ 190 C/ 375 F/ Gas Mark 5 and line two 12-hole muffin trays with cases.
  2. Melt the chocolate by breaking the chocolate pieces into a heatproof bowl. Place on top of a pan of simmering water, making sure the bowl does not touch the water, or the chocolate will burn. Stir occasionally. Leave to cool slightly.
  3. In a large bowl cream the butter and sugar until the mixture is pale, smooth and light. In a separate bowl beat the egg yolks for several minutes. Slowly add the egg yolks to the creamed mixture and beat well.
  4. Add the melted chocolate and beta well.
  5. Combine the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt in a separate bowl. 
  6. Mix the milk and vanilla extract in a jug.
  7. Add one third of the flour to the chocolate mixture and beat until incorporated. Then add one half of the milk, and beat well. Repeat until all of the flour and milk is used, ending on the flour. 
  8. In a clean bowl, whisk the egg whites until soft peaks start to form. Carefully fold the egg whites into the batter, using a metal spoon. Do not beat or all the air you've added by whisking will be lost.
  9. Carefully scoop the mixture into cupcake cases, filling them to about two thirds full - this is a fairly liquid batter, so be careful not to be messy. place one raspberry in the middle of the batter, and do not push down, as it ill sink into the batter itself. 
  10. Bake for 20-25 minutes. To check they are cooked, insert a skewer into the middle, and when it comes out clean they are cooked. Leave in the tins to cool for 10 minutes, then place on a wire rack to cool completely.

For the cupcakes I made, I used two different frostings to make two-toned icing, but you can just do, one or the other if you prefer.

Raspberry Frosting:

55g butter, softened
30ml milk, room temperature
250g icing sugar, sifted
2 1/2 tbsp seedless raspberry jam

  1. In a large bowl, beat the butter, milk and half the icing sugar until smooth. 
  2. Add the raspberry jam and start beating, whilst gradually adding the remaining icing sugar.
  3. Once incorporated, beat for another minute, and leave it.

Chocolate Frosting:

55g butter, softened
30ml milk, room temperature
15g cocoa powder
235g icing sugar, sifted

  1. In a large bowl, beat the butter, milk, cocoa powder and half the icing sugar until smooth.
  2. Gradually add the remaining icing sugar, whilst beating.
  3. Once incorporated, beat for another 2 minutes, and leave it.
To decorated the cupcakes, I laid a piping bag on it's side, and put the raspberry frosting on the bottom. I then turned it upright and put the chocolate frosting on the other side, so that when you pipe, the two colours come out at the same time, creating a two-toned swirl.

If you try these, tell me how they go, I hope you like them!

Thanks for reading :) 

Monday, 5 August 2013

White Chocolate and Raspberry Cupcakes

Last weekend it was my cousin's 13th birthday, so I baked her - and my whole extended family (cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents) - these White Chocolate and Raspberry cupcakes. They all loved them!

The sponge mix is a basic vanilla sponge with raspberry jam stirred in, and once it has cooled after baking, you take a small piece out of the centre and put a teaspoon of raspberry jam into the middle. For the frosting, you make a basic vanilla frosting and then stir in melted white chocolate and double cream - it tastes just like melted white chocolate poured over the cake, divine!


110g Butter, softened 
180g Caster Sugar
2 Large eggs
125g Self-Raising Flour, sifted
120g Plain Flour, sifted
125ml Milk, room temperature
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
3 tbsp Raspberry Jam, preferably seedless

  1. Preheat the oven to 160 C Fan/ 180 C/ 350 F/ Gas Mark 4. Line a 12 hole muffin tray with big cases ( I managed to get 14 cupcakes out of this batch, but I was making them slightly smaller than usual as my grandparents and lots of adults were eating them.)
  2. Cream the butter and sugar until smooth, pale and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time, mixing after each addition until they are fully incorporated. 
  3. Sift the flours into a bowl, and mix the mil and vanilla together in a jug.
  4. Add one third of the flour mix to the butter mix, then add one half of the milk mixture, mixing just until incorporated. Repeat this until all the flour and milk is used up, and finish on the flour.
  5. Fold in the raspberry jam to give a good rippled effect. 
  6. Scoop the mixture into the muffin cases, until the cases are just over 2/3 full. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes. Leave to rest in the tray for about 10 minutes and then transfer onto a wire rack.


30g Butter, softened
15ml Milk, room temperature
A drop of Vanilla Extract
125g Icing Sugar
100g good quality White Chocolate
3 tbsp Double Cream

Filling for cakes: 1 tsp Raspberry jam each
Topping: 1 Raspberry each

  1. In a bowl mix the butter, milk, vanilla and half the sugar for a few minutes until smooth. Gradually add the remaining icing sugar, beating well after each addition.
  2. Melt the white chocolate in a heatproof bowl, over a pan of simmering water - make sure the bowl does not touch the water, so the chocolate does not burn. Leave to cool a bit.
  3. Once cooled, add the chocolate to the basic vanilla frosting you already have, along with the double cream. Beat well for a few minutes to make white chocolate frosting.
  4. Make a small hole in the middle of each cupcake, and put a teaspoon of jam in each. Then top with the white chocolate frosting, and finish off with a raspberry.
If you try this, tell me how it goes, hope you like this recipe!

Thanks for reading :)

Thursday, 1 August 2013

My New Obsession: Above-Knuckle Rings

I know it's been a long time since I last posted anything, but I just haven't felt inspired about something to write about - until I made a small purchase in Miss Selfridge on Tuesday. 

I bought a pack of three cute, gold above-knuckle rings, for £8.50, and I love them!

They are so easy to wear and they look good with basically any outfit (and they never fall off!)

What do you think about above-knuckle rings? 
Thanks for reading :)

Sunday, 24 March 2013


Profiteroles are one of my favourite patisserie things to eat, because they are so light and fluffy, and then filled with chantilly cream + covered with chocolate sauce = heaven!

I always thought they would be really hard to make, because they look so professional, but after watching the Great British Bake Off week when they used choux pastry, I thought 'What the hell, I might as well try!' and they turned out really well.

Recently, we had some friends round, and so I decided to treat them to homemade profiteroles, and they were even better than the first time!
The recipe I used is the GBBO one, and it is so good!
Makes about 48 profiteroles, depending on how big you pipe them. (I think I made mine a bit too big...)

1/4 tsp salt
75g butter, diced
175ml water
100g flour, sifted
3 eggs, room temperature, beaten

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celsius (400 fahrenheit.)
  2. Put the salt, butter and water in a saucepan and heat gently until the butter has completely melted, but don't let the water boil or some of it will evaporate.
  3. Bring the mixture to a boil quickly, and add all the flour in one go.
  4. Remove the pan from the heat straight away, and beat furiously with a wooden spoon. (It will look a mess at first, but soon it will turn into a smooth, heavy dough.)
  5. Put the pan back on the heat, and beat for another two minutes, until the dough comes away from the edges of the pan in a smooth, glossy ball.
  6. Tip the dough into a large mixing bowl, and leave to cool until barely warm.
  7. Using an electric mixer, gradually beat in the eggs. Add enough egg to make a shiny, paste-like dough - to check it's ready, gently shake the a spoon with dough on it, and if the dough falls off easily, it's ready. If the dough is too wet it will spread out, rather than puff up, in the oven.
  8. Spoon the dough into a piping bag, and pipe mounds about 3cm wide and 2cm high - make sure they are spaced well apart. 
  9.  Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 180 degrees celsius (350 fahrenheit.) Quickly open and close the oven door (to get rid of steam, then bake for a further 5 minutes.
  10. Remove the profiteroles from the oven, make a small hole in the side of them (to let out steam) and return to the oven for 3 or 4 more minutes. 
  11. Cool on a wire rack.

You need to fill the profiteroles with Chantilly cream, which is just vanilla flavoured whipped cream (use 250ml of whipping cream, 2 tbsp of icing sugar and 1 tsp of vanilla extract to make the right amount for this many profiteroles.) Whisk that all up in a chill mixing bowl, with a chilled whisk for the best results.

Fill a piping bag with the Chantilly cream, and pipe it into the profiteroles immediately - you will have to widen the hole you made in them for the steam, and pipe through that.

Now the best part - the hot chocolate sauce! The key to making this sauce really good is using good quality 70% cocoa solids, dark chocolate.

100g dark chocolate, broken up
25g unsalted butter
2 tbsp icing sugar


  1. Put all the ingredients in a small saucepan, preferably non-stick, and heat gently.
  2. Stir  frequently until melted and smooth. 
  3. Keep the sauce warm until needed.

Hope you find this useful, and if you try it out, I'd like to know what you think!

Thanks for reading!

First OOTD: Lazy Day

This is my first OOTD, so hopefully it's okay! Here goes!

My Lazy Day outfit is just what I wear on weekends when I'm not doing anything, just homework, TV and maybe some baking!

The leggings are Topshop Heavy-Weight black, leggings and they are amazingly comfy, warm, and not see through, like some black leggings! The shirt is Gilly Hicks, which have amazing plaid shirts in every colour, the jumper is from Jack Wills (best knitted jumpers, I have at least 4) and the scarf is also Topshop.

Slipper socks are a necessity during winter when it gets really chilly, and I just love these Snowman ones! My form tutor actually gave them to me a few years ago, which makes them double as cute!

For my makeup, as I wasn't doing much, I only put on mascara, which I'd say is my makeup essential - I'd leave the house wearing nothing but mascara!

What is your most comfortable "Lazy Day" outfit? And what's your beauty essential?

Hope you liked my first OOTD, and if you think I should do it differently next time, leave a comment below!

Thank you,
Happy Reading :)

SS13 Nails

I was very bored with my nails, and so I decided that I was going to inject a bit of Spring into my wardrobe by painting my nails! After spending a good hour or so looking at all the different catwalk trends this season, I chose one of the many modern takes on a french manicure!

I say it's a modern french mani, but it's actually just a diagonal stripe covering nearly half of my nail. The only thing is so many people have been saying it's a french manicure that I've decided to call it that instead!

It was really easy to do, because you just have to put some tape at the angle you want, paint the stripe, leave for a bit and peel off! Just finish it off with a clear top coat to protect it, easy peasy lemon squeezy!

The colour I used is a very pale, nearly-white pink, from laca de uñas (I'm guessing this is a spanish brand, but I just found the colour in my mum's nail polish collection and really liked it! The essie colour called 'Fiji' is really similar though!)

The topcoat polish that I used is the Rimmel 60 seconds in clear. The polish isn't a great topcoat, but it dries really quickly for when you are in a rush, which is good!The topcoat polish tcoat, but it dries really quickly for when you are in a rush, which is good!

I really like this look, and I think I'm gonna try it with a few different colours, and also check out some of the other trends, with vertical stripes etc, but right now I really like this look! I hope you agree!

Thanks for reading!

Food Gawker and the amazing Chocolate Pudding!

Just before I start, if you haven't heard of Food Gawker, then stop reading this, and go there right NOW!
Okay, now that that's over and done with, I can begin!

The amazing Food Gawker <3 It has the most beautiful pictures of bread, cakes, cupcakes, brownies, chocolate, any good tasting food thing ever, and links them back to the original website/blog! Such a good, simple idea, and I love it!
The reason I am writing this, is because I have found the best recipe on there, and I needed to share it with you! It is a chocolate melt-in-the-middle pudding, which you can whip up in the space of a few minutes, cook in the microwave (yes, the microwave!) and tastes sososo good!

These puddings are so simple to make, and taste divine!
The original recipe was in american cups, so I converted them into grams, and made it for 3 people instead of 2!

48g plain flour
48g sugar
48g cocoa powder
big pinch of salt
48 ml milk
48g melted butter
3 eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
50g chocolate chips (preferably milk or white, and you can do more!)

  1. In a bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder and salt.
  2. Add the milk, melted butter, eggs ad vanilla. Use a whisk to beat it all together, into a smooth, quite runny consistency.
  3. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  4. Divide the mixture between 3 microwavable cups. Each of my "Falcon's School" mugs hold 6 fluid ounces, and that is about the right amount.
  5. Microwave the cups together, on the highest setting for 2 minutes. be careful though, because my highest setting is 900 watts, so make sure you adjust the time accordingly.
  6. Make sure you leave to puddings to rest before you eat them, and sprinkle with a bit of icing sugar!

Also, mine bubbled up over the edge of the cup, so you might want to put them on a plate when you're microwaving them!

Thanks for reading :)