There are a few recipes I’ve now made enough times to know them off by heart and this vanilla cupcake recipe is one of them. I think the fact it’s just so easy to throw together (seriously it only takes 10 minutes to have these ready to go in the oven – you can soften your butter using the defrost setting of your microwave) and it’s easy to make so many variations, means it’s a regular in our house. While there is nothing wrong with a plain iced cupcake – in fact I often crave the simplicity of one, I’ve also used this recipe to create cupcakes filled with M&M’s and chocolate chips.
Growing up we always referred to these gorgeous little treats as ‘butterfly cakes’. For us, the small pieces of cake standing proudly on top reminded us of Butterfly wings, others disagree and argue these are ‘Fairy Cakes’ and I can certainly see their point of view. No matter if you call these Butterfly or Fairy Cakes they are simple to make and taste delicious.
- 120 g butter - softened
- 2/3 cup of caster sugar
- 1 1/2 cups of self raising flour
- 1/2 cup of milk
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup of strawberry jam
- 125 ml of thickened cream - whipped
- icing sugar to dust
- Preheat your oven to 180 degrees and line 2 x 12 hole muffins tins with paper cases.
- Place the butter, sugar, self raising flour, milk, vanillin extract and eggs in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat on a low speed for two minutes until ingredients have combined before increasing speed and beating for a further 3 minutes or until mixture is smooth and pale.
- Spoon the mixture into the paper cases (fill approximately 2/3) and bake in oven for 18 - 20 minutes or until the cupcakes are cooked through and golden on top.
- Cool in the tins for 5 minutes before carefully transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- While your cakes are cooling, whip the thickened cream until soft peaks form. Cover and place in the fridge until needed.
- Once cakes are cool, use a teaspoon to remove a small circle from the top of the cake - don't remove too much, around 1/3 of the way down is plenty. Cut the portion of cake you have removed in half to create the 'butterfly wings' and set aside.
- Add a teaspoon of strawberry jam to the hole you have created.
- Add approximately a tablespoon of whipped cream.Place the 'wings' in the whipped cream.
- Repeat process until all cupcakes are filled.
- Dust lightly with icing sugar and serve.