cherry filled cupcakes with old fashioned buttercream

If dogs are man’s best friend then cupcakes would have to be the female equivalent. Find me a girl who doesn’t swoon at the sight of a decadently decorated cupcake and I’ll eat my socks.

Though they have been around since the 19th century, there has been a healthy (or not so healthy) resurgence of these miniature delights over the past couple of years and they’ve infiltrated all walks of life. From the wedding tiers to baby showers to corporate product launches, the humble cupcake shows no sign of backing down in popularity, even taking over from the faithful donut in America as a preferred snack.

In a rant about the rising popularity of the little buggers, Zoe Williams of The Guardian UK coined them “…the favourite greedy treat of the me-generation”.

Boutique cupcake bakeries and blogs devoted to the creation of them are springing up like toadstools after a rain. And rightly so! Who can resist ogling at the spectacular creations of bloggers such as Lorraine Elliot of Not Quite Nigella (check out her Baklava Cupcakes) and the amazingly talented Cheryl Porro whose blog Cupcakes by Chockylit is responsible for wasting away a significant portion of my days.

So naturally I’ve been suckered into the craze. If ever a special occasion comes up I can’t help but jump at the opportunity to whip up a batch of these little buggers.

I like to use Scout’s Cupcake Recipe (a legendary presence at the forums) for a base cupcake. Though traditionalists will scoff , the recipe is mind numbingly easy (no need to cream butter and sugar) and I’ve never had a batch fail me. It can also be low fat if you substitute the cream for low fat cream….but who’s worrying about their waistline when they are devouring a cupcake?! Be warned that if you are a stickler for the rich dense cupcakes of yesteryear this recipe will not be for you as the lack of butter lends to the more sponge cake like texture.

These particular ones were made for a friend’s baby shower (the sugar booties were bought from Home Provedore in Fremantle). The recipe is a combination of Scout’s recipe, Chockylit’s cherry filling and my own version of buttercream icing.

Scout’s Cupcake Recipe

  1. Crack 2 eggs into a 1 cup metric measuring cup
  2. Fill to the top with thickened cream
  3. Beat 1 minute.
  4. Add  1 splash vanilla essence  and 3/4 cup caster sugar
  5. Beat 3 minutes
  6. Sift 1 cup SR flour in
  7. Fold into mixture
  8. Fill up cupcake papers to 3/4 full (I find the recipe only makes about 8 for some reason so I normally double it and bake 2 trays. I like to pick the best looking ones for a dozen any way)
  9. Bake at 180 degrees for approximately 15 minutes.

Cherry Filling (my process differs slightly to Chockylit’s)

2 cups cherries (Chockylit’s original recipe uses pitted fresh or frozen cherries but as they are hard/expensive to get my hands on I use morello cherries that you can buy in a jar at the supermarket. The sour tang actually goes quite well with the sweet rich buttercream).

1/2 cup water

Seeds from 1 vanilla pod (or as Chockylit does you can use 1t of vanilla essence)

1/2 cup caster sugar

2 T cornstarch

  1. Add cherries, vanilla, sugar and water to a pot.
  2. Cook for about 10 minutes or until sufficiently reduced.
  3. Stir a little water into the cornstarch and then mix into cherry mixture (I find if you don’t add the cold water into the cornstarch it forms those horrible lumps as soon as it touches the hot mixture).

Buttercream Icing (you can substitute for any type of icing here, I’ve made these in the past with cream cheese icing and just a lemon glaze…of course nothing can top the impressively towering buttercream swirl).

2 cups of icing sugar

1/2 cup unsalted butter (buy the best quality butter you can find, it really makes a difference)

1t vanilla extract

2T cream (you should have some left over from the cupcakes)

  1. Cream the butter until it is pale white
  2. Add in the vanilla essence
  3. Gradually blend in the sugar on low speed
  4. Add the cream and blend on high for about 4 minutes
  5. Tint with a colour of your choice!

To assemble

Cut a triangular cone portion out of the top of the cupcake. Fill with the cherry filling, replace the top, ice with your desired piping bag nozzle and you’re done!

(Below) Birds eye, Dissected view (look it’s smiling! Say cheese…)

(Below) Same recipe with a different theme – S’s birthday. You may have gathered he’s a “surfrat”. The icing hasn’t set here in this photo which is why it’s looking alarmingly glossy!

Ps: The “sand” is actually crumbled digestive biscuits….in case you were wondering!

6 Responses to “cherry filled cupcakes with old fashioned buttercream”
  1. Gorgeous work and thankyou so much for the shoutout! Cheryl’s cupcakes are amazing aren’t they! I love those cupcake cups and how you added the “surprise” in the middle 😀

  2. Trisha says:

    These cupcakes are insane! And yes, I agree, Cheryl and Lorraine’s creations are totally amazing… but yours are beautiful too! Love the sound of cherry filling… especially if they’re smiling at you like that! 🙂

  3. I love the cherry filling, but I really love those surf themed decorations! Makes me want to so eat some delicious sand 🙂

    And you’ve well and truly got me psyched for my own cupcake baking bonanza I have ahead of my on Friday night, for my little nephew’s first birthday party on Saturday, thanks!!

  4. Lorraine: my pleasure! of course i’ve got a soft spot for anyone that shares the same name and interests as me 😛 jk.. i’ve been a big fan for awhile so thanks for visiting.

    Trisha: hehe nothing beats a happy cupcake. I adore the 2 colour tinted buttercream that you’ve done. will have to give that a go!

    Conor: i can’t think of anything better than a cupcake baking session on friday night. the surfboards and palm trees were actually the work of Rosie @ Sugarcraft by Rosie …. she has some fabulous cupcake toppers that are usually hard to find in perth! best part is eating them..yum!

  5. Love those vintage print cupcake cases! Think the thick buttercream might be giving me a bit of an artery clog though =p

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