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Recipe – Cherry and Vanilla Valentine’s Day Cupcakes

Some people say that the way to a person’s heart is through their stomach and it definitely works for me!

I decided to make these slightly ahead of time so if you are panicking about what to do for Valentine’s Day this year you can whip up a batch of these beauties and say ‘I Love You’ with cakes.

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Ian and I aren’t that big on Valentine’s Day anymore but we aren’t completely ‘Bah Humbug’ about it and we do like to make small gestures like a bunch of flowers (red tulips if you are reading this Ian!), chocolates and a nice meal with a good bottle of wine. I feel like telling those couples who use the old ‘we don’t need a special day to show we love each other’ excuse to just cheer up and embrace the day – it only happens once a year anyway!

Of course, these cupcakes are great to enjoy at any time of the year, I simply decided to jazz them up a bit with fancy, new cake toppers.

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I found these lovely cake toppers on ebay from this site and was really impressed with the customer service received. I had an email sent to me almost instantly and attached was a lovely cupcake recipe which I decided to try out. I was even sent a free sample of some edible turquoise and silver glitter!

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I tweaked it slightly and swapped the raspberry flavour for cherry as I felt it was a bit tastier and I also have a lovely jar of Fortnum & Masons jam from my trip to London that I thought would add a lovely flavour.

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It seems like there are a lot of different bowls on the go with this recipe but I do like this method of combining the wet and dry ingredients bit by bit and I think it creates a really smooth batter.

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Ingredients

For the cupcakes:

110g of unsalted butter at room temperature

180g of caster sugar

2 eggs

125g of self-raising flour, sifted

120g of plain flour, sifted

125ml of milk

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

3 tablespoons of good quality jam (I used cherry but you could use strawberry or raspberry instead)

For the icing:

110g of unsalted butter at room temperature

60ml of milk

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

500g of icing sugar, sifted

A few drops of pink food colouring

Cupcake toppers and sugar pearls to decorate

How to make it

  • Begin by heating your oven to 180°C, Gas Mark 4, and fill a cupcake tray with paper or silicone cupcake cases (the above amounts made 18 cupcakes)vday6
  • Cream together the butter and sugar for the cupcakes and beat until the mixture is light and fluffyvday9
  • Add the eggs one by one and mix well
  • In a separate mixing bowl, sift together the two flours and in a measuring jug, stir the vanilla extract into the milk
  • Add one third of the flours to the butter mixture and stir well
  • Now add a third of the milk to this bowl and combine well again
  • Repeat the last two steps until all the flour and milk has been added
  • Finally, spoon in three tablespoons of your chosen jam and fold it into the batter mixture so you have a lovely marbled effectvday12
  • Spoon this into the cupcake cases and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brownvday13
  • While these are cooling, you can make up your butter icingvday15
  • Beat together the butter, milk, vanilla extract and half of the icing sugar until it is smooth
  • Gradually add the rest of the icing sugar until it is at a thick consistency (you may want to add another 50g or so of icing sugar)
  • If you want to colour your icing then do so now by adding one drop at a time until you are happy with the shade (I opted for a pale pink colour)
  • Once your cupcakes have cooled, load up your icing bag and get creative!

Here are a few designs I came up with:

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I think they looked very pretty as they were but I added some of my Valentine’s cake toppers and pink and white sugar pearls too:

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Finally, in the hope of not eating the majority of these over the next few days I opened my new cupcake boxes so I could give some away to friends. I picked these up for less than £1 in my local Home Bargains and they are a great way to transport cupcakes and look rather lovely too!

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So, whether you are single, married or enjoying that special first date tomorrow night, I wish you a very happy Valentine’s Day! x

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About hannahhotcakes

My name is Hannah. I live near Bath in a lovely village in the Cotswolds with my husband Ian, the love of my life for the past 10 years, in our dream cottage. I have landed my dream job as a primary school teacher and I can’t think of anything else I would rather be doing. I am a self-confessed foodie and I love to cook, bake, and eat out as much as possible. Here are some things I love: My friends and family, travelling, fresh flowers, good books, having breakfast on my balcony, horror films, Christmas, tea, Las Vegas, lie-ins, red wine, Liverpool FC, music, sausage dogs, Spain, rare steak, fashion, cheese, American TV series and camping. And here are my pet hates: People dressed as animals, whistling, being rushed, being made to wait, girls who act stupid to impress a man, spiders, sunburn and rocket (it comes with EVERYTHING!)

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