High Inquisitor Cupcakes
430g (15 oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
265 g (91/2 oz) caster (superfine) sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
125 g (41/2 oz/1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
2 large eggs
125 ml full-cream (whole) milk
200ml lychee syrup
125 ml (4 fl oz/1/2 cup) vegetable oil
2 tablespoons Greek yoghurt (or sour cream)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
3 drops pink food gel
300g canned lychees, roughly chopped
2 batches Swiss meringue buttercream frosting
1 tsp rose water flavouring
3 drops pink food gel
3 drops leaf green food gel
Add rose water flavouring to the frosting and mix until well combined.
Split the frosting between three bowls. Add pink food gel to one and mix until well combined. Add the green food gel to the second bowl and repeat. Leave the third bowl white.
To prepare the buttercream flowers add the pink and white frosting to two separate piping bags.
Lay out a large piece of plastic wrap on your work bench. Pipe rows of the pink and white frosting next to each other. About 8 of each.
Roll up the frosting into a log and twist each end. Snip off one end with some scissors.
Add the frosting log into a large piping bag fitted with a Wilton 97 tip.
Add about a tbsp of the pink frosting to a second piping bag fitted with a Wilton #3 tip.
To make the roses youll need what’s called a flower nail. You can grab them at cake supply stores, or online. They’ll make piping your flowers easier.
You’ll also need to cut out some 1 inch x 1 inch pieces of baking paper.
Add a dab of frosting on your flower nail and add a square of baking paper on top.
Pipe a little blob of pink frosting using the #3 tip. Then pipe a swirl of frosting using the leaf tip. Continue piping little petals around the blob of pink frosting as demonstrated in the video. The more petals you pipe, the bigger your rose will be. Because we want these to be quite small, you’ll want to pipe around 6 petals around each rose.
Transfer the piped roses onto a baking tray and chill until theyre ready to use. And yes, in case you haven’t figured it out yet, you’ll be piping a lot of flowers. Throw on your favourite podcast or album and pipe for your life! You’ll need about 20 roses for each cupcake.
Preheat a fan-forced oven to 140°C (275°F) or a conventional oven to 160°C (320°F). Line two cupcake tins with the cupcake liners.
Add the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt to a large mixing bowl and mix with a hand mixer until well combined.
Next, add the softened butter and mix on low speed until the mixture reaches a crumbly, sand-like texture.
Add the eggs, milk, oil, lychee syrup, pink food gel, yoghurt and vanilla, and mix on low speed until all the dry ingredients are incorporated. Scrape down the side of the bowl and mix for a final 20 seconds.
Fill each liner three-quarters of the way. Using an ice-cream scoop to transfer the batter to the cupcake liners makes this a quick and easy process, and ensures each liner contains exactly the same amount of batter and that the cupcakes will bake evenly. Add some chopped lychees on top.
Bake for 40–50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a cupcake comes out clean. Allow the cupcakes to cool completely on a wire rack before frosting.
Fit the end of a piping bag with a medium round tip and frost a small swirl of frosting on top of each cupcake.
To stick the chilled roses on your frosted cupcakes, you’ll need to act fast, because the chilled roses will defrost and soften after about 5 minutes.
Fit the end of a piping bag with a Wilton #3 tip and fill with green frosting.
Frost tiny little bulbs in between each rose to fill the gaps.
STORAGE: store in an airtight container for up to 3 days (refrigerated and thawed 40 min before serving). Although I’d recommend baking and serving on the same day.
EQUIPMENT: Can be made using a hand mixer (always mix on lowest speed) or a hand whisk. Take care not to over mix the batter.
OVEN TEMPERATURE: Each oven is different. Some are old, some are new. Some ovens can be hotter on the inside than the temp you set your oven at. If you find your cupcakes, cakes or macarons are browning or cracking, turn the oven temp down 10C. A handy trick is to get an oven thermometer which sits inside the oven and will give you an accurate temperature reading. They’re inexpensive and can be purchased online or at your local kitchen supply store. And always bake in the centre rack of the oven for best results!
BAKING TIME: These cupcakes will typically bake on a lower temp and for a little longer than regular cupcake recipes. I find a low temperate and a slow bake results in flatter tops and no caramelisation so that if the cupcakes are coloured they don’t change colour and brown. After 40 minutes, stick a skewer into the centre of one of the cupcakes, if it comes out with wet batter, bake for another 10 minutes until the skewer comes out with crumbs or completely clean.
Large mixing bowls
Magic Whisk for wet ingredients
Stand mixer (or hand mixer)
Cupcake baking tin
Ice cream scoop (optional)