Black vel­vet Hal­loween cup­cakes

BBC Good Food - - Easiest Ever -

MAKES 22 PREP 25 mins plus cool­ing and dec­o­rat­ing COOK 20 mins EASY

200g but­ter, soft­ened 300g golden caster sugar 200g dark choco­late, melted 2 eggs

250g self rais­ing flour

1⁄4 tsp bak­ing pow­der mixed with 100ml boil­ing wa­ter

50g co­coa pow­der 200ml milk

1-2 tsp black food colour­ing (op­tional) for the but­ter­cream

300g un­salted but­ter, soft­ened 500g ic­ing sugar

1 tsp vanilla ex­tract black food colour­ing for the dec­o­ra­tions pack of Smar­ties black ic­ing pen

1 pack mixed coloured fon­dant ic­ing (you'll need pink, green, blue and white) liquorice and straw­berry laces and other sweets such as jelly fangs and liquorice all­sorts ic­ing eyes (see tip, be­low left)

1 Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Line two 12-hole cup­cake tins with cases. Beat the but­ter and sugar un­til the mix­ture is creamy. Beat in the choco­late and the eggs un­til com­bined, then stir in the flour and bak­ing pow­der, co­coa pow­der, milk and food colour­ing, if us­ing. Spoon the mix­ture evenly be­tween the cup­cake cases, lev­el­ling the tops.

2 Bake for 20 mins or un­til the cakes are risen and springy to the touch. Cool for 5 mins in the tin, then lift out onto a wire rack to cool com­pletely. 3 To make the but­ter­cream, beat the but­ter un­til soft, then stir in the ic­ing sugar a lit­tle at a time. Beat in the vanilla and some black food colour­ing, then trans­fer to a pip­ing bag fit­ted with a plain noz­zle.

4 For the cat face, pipe the black but­ter­cream in an even swirl onto the cup­cake and smooth with a pal­ette knife. Pipe two ears by mak­ing a blob for each and pulling the ic­ing bag up­wards to a point. Add two eyes on each with Smar­ties and use the black ic­ing pen to paint a pupil onto each. Add a tri­an­gle nose made of pink fon­dant ic­ing and cre­ate whiskers with sweets.

5 For the mon­ster faces, cut cir­cles of green and blue fon­dant to fit the tops of the cup­cake and fix them in place with a lit­tle but­ter­cream. Add eyes, noses and mouths made of sweets or use ic­ing eyes. For skele­tons, cut out shapes with white fon­dant and fix in place with the but­ter­cream.

PER CUP­CAKE 517 kcals • fat 24g • sat­u­rates 15g • carbs 70g • sug­ars 59g • fi­bre 2g • pro­tein 4g • salt 0.3g

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