I am so sorry for my erratic posting lately and randomness over the past couple of weeks, but sweeties, it is only going to get worse from here. You see, once upon a time there was a little girl. She had to write the equivalent of 4-5 essays in 3 hours, 3 essays in 2 hours and worry about the question, because it could have been any topic in her courses. She has to listen to a foreign language for 1/2 and hour and be able to perfectly translate it, then write a slightly analytical answer. She has 2 weeks and one day of this, then she has to speak to a stranger who speaks said-foreign-language perfectly.
Oh, and little girl didn’t even get started on having to learn about the lymphatic system’s role in the immune response…
Said little girl is on holiday now, but can it really be considered that when she gets up, studies, eats, exercises, then sleeps? She has time to cook, but small things, not too much, and she apologises and would like to make it up to you with a wonderful guest post today and a huge array of delicious guest posts in the near future. While little girl studies, she hopes you all will forgive her :) – Be sure to keep checking and following her Facebook page, because she promises to share lots of her favourite bloggers’ creations on there to keep your appetite fulfilled!
By now, (I sincerely hope) you know that cette petite fille est moi ;) and I do apologise for this. Just wait till the end of August – my major school exams will be over, I will be baking a storm for my belated birthday celebrations and graduation and you guys get to see it all :D – Patience is a virtue and you will be rewarded I promise! Just for now, please stay with me even if my posting goes a little naff! :D
But it is not too bad, I will see you this weekend, next week – after that… send out the cops looking for me ;)
ANYWAY :D… today I would like to share with you the secrets behind a very successful bakery. Little Bertha is a Melbourne based Cakes and Catering Service, which actually I have never visited considering the last time I went to Melbourne was when I still could fit into the baby-swing at the park (oh, how butts have changed!) ;)
They bake fresh products daily, as any respectable bakery should, and I have heard about how fantastic they are so they are on my hit list should I visit Melbourne whenever! They feature an enormous range, from biscuits and cakes to tarts to roulades and petit fours – Loving the French influence here! Everything on their site looks delicious, I do kind of want to eat up my screen…
I mean, look at these creations:
And that is just a taste – Check out their gallery online for a full taste of everything you could ever desire to satisfy that sweet tooth I know you all have! Better yet, just take a plane and visit them… I know my tongue is trying to walk me to the airport right now :D
Now this is not a review (No matter how much I wish it was!) – No, Little Bertha generously contacted me and want to share with all of you, my wonderful readers, the secrets to their incredible cupcakes…
I know this video is what all of you look like right now…
Now I am going to stop yakking, I know what people will do if I keep them from finding out the secret so without further ado, let me reveal to you the method behind their treasure cove of cupcakes…
How To Bake the BEST Cupcakes
- Fill your cupcake wells 1/2 to 2/3 full. Any more and you will get a gooey mess instead of a beautiful cupcake. If you use less than 1/2 a well of batter, then you will get wimpy cupcakes and will have to use extra frosting to make them look larger.
- Next, choose the right cupcake pan. Good cupcake pans are shiny and on the heavy side. They will cook 6 to 12 cupcakes at a time. Large muffin pans don’t work well for baking precious little cupcakes.
- Make sure you have 2 pans available because then you won’t have to cool a pan before you finish baking your cupcakes. Two 12 well cupcake pans should be enough for one batch of cupcakes.
- Use either paper or foil wrappers or spray the individual wells with a nonstick spray. If you are using the new silicone pans, wrappers or nonstick spray work fine in these also.
- Avoid over mixing your batter. This will cause your cupcakes to be rather chewy instead of perfectly moist.
- Follow the directions in your cupcake recipe. If your recipe calls for a hand mixer and you are using a stand mixer, you will need to reduce you mixing time. Stand mixers mix batters faster than regular hand mixers. This will ensure you get beautifully fluffy cupcakes like these from Little Bertha.
- Bring all ingredients to room temperature before mixing your cupcake batter. The items will mix evenly, and the result will be a wonderful cupcake batter. By mixing cold items into your batter, you risk having a lumpy batter which might cause you to overmix your batter.
- Preheat your oven to the correct temperature BEFORE you put your cupcakes in the oven. An oven thermometer would also be a great idea to make sure your oven is set to the right temperature.
- If your oven cooks food faster at the rear of the oven, then make sure you rotate your cupcake pan halfway through the baking time.
- Test if they are done after the minimum cooking time. If the cupcakes aren’t finished cooking after the minimum time, then place them back in the oven for some additional cooking time. Cupcakes are done when a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.
- Cook only one pan of cupcakes at a time. Place your cupcake pan in the very centre of your oven. If your oven tends to cook items more that are towards the back, then rotate your cupcake pan halfway through the cooking time.
- f you absolutely have to bake 2 pans of cupcakes at one time, make sure you switch cupcake pans halfway through the cooking time. By this I mean put the bottom pan on the top and move the top pan to the bottom.
- Cupcakes are best eaten the same day they are made. Undecorated cupcakes can be frozen up to 3 months.
Try this basic cupcake recipe to get you started. Add anything you like for extra flavour and texture and play around with icings and frostings. These Lemon Curd Cupcakes are a nice twist on your basic cupcake.
- 1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2/3 cup white sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups plain flour
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 cup (60ml) milk
- 2 cups (230 grams) icing or powdered sugar, sifted
- 1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons milk or light cream
- Assorted food colours (if desired)
- Preheat oven to 177 degrees C and line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.
- In the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Beat in the vanilla extract.
- In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
- With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the flour mixture and milk, in three additions, beginning and ending with the flour. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Carefully fill the muffin cups with the batter and bake for about 17 -20 minutes or just until set and a toothpick inserted into a cupcake comes out clean.
- Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Once the cupcakes have completely cooled, frost with icing.
- In an electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, cream the butter until smooth and well blended.
- Add the vanilla extract.
- With the mixer on low speed, gradually beat in the sugar. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Add the milk and beat on high speed until frosting is light and fluffy (about 3-4 minutes).
- Add a little more milk or sugar, if needed.
- Tint the frosting with desired food colouring.
So you are telling me with this simple recipe and with those tips, I could be baking cupcakes like in those photos? OMG. Just wow, I am so brilliant (without having even done anything ;))
To see more of their creations just click on one of the various links provided to their website and also visit them on their Facebook page :) – I know your hand is itching towards your mouse so give into temptation and just do it!