Togetherness, inspiration and creativity

Farm Animal Cupcakes – Mich Turner’s Easter Holiday Treat!

Farm Animal Cupcakes – Mich Turner’s Easter Holiday Treat!

Not that we ever needed an excuse to get baking… but the Easter holidays are now upon us, and if you have miniature crafters at home, you may be searching for creative ways to keep the kids busy! Well look no further – these adorable little farm animal cupcakes are just the ticket! Not only are they absolutely delicious (thanks to some incredible white chocolate buttercream, among other yummy things!) but they’re also great fun to decorate. Once theses pretty Easter cupcakes are out of the oven, the fun can continue as you turn them into adorable little characters! Want to know exactly how the lovely Mich Turner produced these fantastic animal cupcakes? Check out her step-by-step cupcake recipe below!

I have fond memories of Easter as a time of indulgence following the period of abstinence of Lent.  We would make a family occasion of going to the local sweet shop and choosing our Easter Egg! These would be collected together in a cardboard box, and a ceremonial photograph taken of each of us with our Easter Eggs on Easter Sunday before we went to church.

These days it is not uncommon to see Hot Cross Buns on sale from 1st January – and indeed, in some bakeries, they are an all-year-round inclusion!  I am a great believer in preserving these holidays, and enjoying these seasonal bakes with gusto.

For Easter, I couldn’t resist featuring these oh-so-cute cupcakes! They are made with indulgent Guittard chocolate – rich cocoa in the dark chocolate sponge cupcakes – and topped with melted white chocolate caramelised buttercream.  The cupcakes are then decorated with marshmallows, and a simple handmade fondant decoration of a sheep or pig.

You Will Need:

For 20 Cupcakes:

  • 250g unsalted butter – softened
  • 250g golden caster sugar
  • 4 large eggs (250g) – beaten
  • 200g self raising flour
  • 50g Guittard cocoa powder
  • 40ml whole milk

For White Chocolate Buttercream:

  • 200g unsalted butter
  • 400g golden icing sugar
  • 1tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 100g Guittard white chocolate – melted and cooled

For Decorations:

  • Chocolate, pink, white and black fondant sugar paste – I use Satinice which is vanilla flavoured (apart from the chocolate) – all are nut free and gluten free
  • 200g each white and pink mini marshmallows
  • Small cranked handle palette knife
  • Selection of modelling tools
  • Sharp knife

Instructions:

Step 1:

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Cream together the butter and sugar in an electric mixer until light and fluffy, then add the beaten eggs slowly, until fully incorporated.

Step 2:

Sieve the flour and cocoa together into the batter, and fold in with a metal spoon or rubber spatula. Stir in the milk to reach a dropping consistency.

Step 3:

Spoon the batter into a large disposable piping bag and snip the end with scissors. Deposit the batter evenly into 20 cupcake cases (fill to ⅔ full), placed inside cupcake tins. Bake in the pre-heated oven for 20-25 mins until risen, golden brown on the surface and a knife inserted comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack.

Step 4:

To create the buttercream, Beat the butter and sugar together until mixed, then beat in the vanilla bean paste and melted, cooled white chocolate.

Step 5:

Make the sheep and pig decorations from fondant sugar paste, held in place with a little water, and leave to set for 30 minutes or longer to firm up.

Step 6:

Working on one cupcake at a time, spread the white chocolate buttercream using the palette knife.

Step 7:

Position the animal head in position – with just enough space to fit one marshmallow beneath the chin – and then work around the head and the rest of the cupcake, filling in all the space with marshmallows gently pushed into the buttercream.

Repeat until all the cupcakes are decorated, and display on a cake stand or present in individual boxes!

Top Tip:

To make the decorations shiny, hold them over the steam from a kettle (or a steamer).

Will you be treating the family to a batch of these adorable animal cupcakes? Or are they just too cute to eat?!



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