I never break rules. Hearts, yes. Dishes, sometimes. But rules are there to be respected. Obeyed.
And yet... I feel like charity deserves a special rule breaking allowance. So for this year's 'Cake A Difference' for Bliss, the charity for premature babies that I support, I decided to bake my cupcakes in the wrong week. I figured that money's money at the end of the day and if I want to make a cupcake for charity outside of the week beginning 14 Feb, well that's my prerogative.
Besides, I almost didn't get involved this year, because - blech! - Harry Eastwood got in on the act and I just really can't bear her 'healthy cake' crap and that damned ridiculous book of hers. But, it's for the babies after all, so I put aside my disdain for an afternoon, and got out my hand mixer.
You may or may not remember that last year I made Red Velvet Cupcakes (REAL ones, Harry, real ones!) for Bliss and sold them at Mr. Other P's office (on account of my 'office' not really being suitable for cake sales). Well I did the same this year, only instead of those crimson beauties, I made up my own recipe for gluten free cupcakes, having learned that there was an anti-wheat contingent present in Rhondda-Cynon-Taff. What can I say? Everybody deserves a cupcake. Provided they pay for it.
I have banged on long and hard enough about how fabulous Rose Levy Beranbaum's book is on this blog before, so I'll spare you the details. But what I will say is that I have poached her mixing technique to make these cupcakes. It is worth it: they rise perfectly level on baking, and have a tenderly delicious crumb.
In fact, I want one now.
I used an ingredient - Dove's Farm Organic Gluten and Wheat Free Self Raising Flour - that I know US readers probably won't be able to get, and I feel bad about it. But let's remind ourselves that they get cake flour, Pam and Rose herself. It's all fair in the cake world.
I made another £50 for Bliss with these. Why not have a cupcake sale yourself? It's such a great cause to support.
Gluten Free Cardamom, Orange and Pistachio Cupcakes
You will need:
250g Dove's Farm Organic Gluten and Wheat Free Self Raising Flour
250g caster sugar
250ml low fat yogurt
1 tsp ground cardamom
2 tsp vanilla
200g cream cheese
500g icing sugar
1 tsp orange extract
chopped pistachios to decorate
- Pre-heat the oven to 180°C and line two 12 bun muffin trays with cupcake liners.
- In a large bowl, mix together the flour and sugar. In another bowl, mix 3 tbsb of the yogurt with the eggs, cardamom and vanilla.
- Add the butter and remaining yogurt to the flour mixture, and beat with a handheld mixer on low speed until combined. Scrape the sides of the bowl and continue beating on high speed for 1 minute.
- Add the egg mixture in two batches, beating on high speed for thirty seconds after each addition.
- Divide the mixture between the liners and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and well risen.
- Cool on a wrack and make the frosting: beat the butter and cream cheese together until smooth, then add the icing sugar and beat until creamy. Add the extract, and use the icing to frost the cupcakes. Top with pistachios.