It’s the Easter cake sale at my daughter’s school this week and I haven’t got a great deal of time to devote to baking so I’m making these really quick and inexpensive cupcakes. Don’t worry, they do also taste lovely (in a simple kind of way) and look tempting (i.e. they involve chocolate).
Some of you may remember that I wrote a while ago about school cake sales and how I’d had my fingers burnt by baking cakes with expensive ingredients which were then sold for virtually nothing. These little lovelies follow all the rules I set down in that blog post.
Here’s the recipe which is so easy it’s burnt into my memory. In true Jack Monroe style the cost of the ingredients are in brackets.
PS. You won’t hear from me again for a while as I’m off to Japan. Expect healthy recipes on my return as I expect to put on at least half a stone while I’m there (Mos Burger, Mister Donut, Beard Pappa, gyozas, udon, sushi, tonkatsu – I’m dreaming of you!!!).
Cost to make = £1.41. They will sell for 30p each so that’s £4.80 to the school.
For the cakes
- 16 cup cake cases (16p)
- 110g self-raising flour (3p)
- 110g caster sugar (16p)
- 110g stork margarine (22p)
- 2 free range eggs (40p)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder (3p)
- 1 teaspoon warm water
- A couple of drops of vanilla extract (20p)
For the icing
- 75g icing sugar (15p)
- 1 teaspoon cocoa powder (6p)
- A little water
Heat the oven to 160 degrees (fan).
Take a large mixing bowl and measure out the flour, margarine, sugar and baking powder. Crack in the eggs and then, with an electric hand mixer, mix until just incorporated (about 20 seconds – don’t over mix). Add the vanilla extract and warm water and mix briefly again.
Put 16 small baking cases into jam tart or muffin tins and spoon 1 ½ heaped teaspoons of cake mix into each one.
Bake in the oven for 20 minutes, then leave to cool on a wire rack.
When completely cool mix up the icing. Put the icing sugar into a small bowl and add the cold water a couple of drops at a time, gradually stirring and adding more water until you have a thick paste. It needs to be thin enough to spread but not so runny that it falls down the sides of your cakes.
Set aside a quarter of the icing in another bowl and add the cocoa powder to the remainder. Stir until the icing has turned a nice chocolaty brown colour.
Ice the cupcakes with the chocolate icing then put a small dollop of white icing in the middle. With a skewer make swirls from the centre of the cake outwards to make a flower/sun pattern. If this is too much like hard work then you can always just drizzle the white icing over the top of each one.
Pop in the fridge for 10 minutes for the icing to set.
Put in an old container that you don’t mind loosing and take to school.
Try not to obsess over whose cupcakes are selling the best and buy your own back if they sell slowly because at least you know they will taste nice.