We’ve got some kitchen tricks and treats up our sleeve for this Halloween. How about making this eye-popping cupcake as a ghoulish goodie..?
Almond Cupcakes (makes 12)
You will need:
For the cupcakes
- 2 large eggs
- 125 ml/4 fl oz soured cream
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
- pink paste food colouring
- 250 g/9 oz white plain, cake or pastry flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 25 g/1 oz ground almonds
- 175 g/6 oz granulated sugar
- 175 g/6 oz unsalted butter, softened
For the decorations
- cornflour, for dusting
- 350 g/12 oz shop-bought fondant, coloured flesh-colour with 23 drops peach paste food colouring (see below)
- 15 g/1/2 oz Half and Half, coloured blue with 1 drop sky blue paste food colouring (see below)
- 10 g/1/4 oz Half and Half, coloured black with 1 drop black paste food colouring (see below)
- 175 g/6 oz plain white Half and Half (see below)
- 175 g/6 oz Half and Half, coloured brown with 10 drops brown and 1 drop black paste food colouring (see below)
- red edible marker pen
- 85 g/3 oz Piping gel Blood (see below)
You can replace the blue Half and Half with other colours to vary the colours of the eyes.
Making half and half (Makes about 225 g/8 oz)
- 115 g/4 oz shop-bought white fondant
- 115 g/4 oz ready-to-use gum paste
1 Knead the fondant and then the gum paste separately on a work surface until smooth, then combine and knead until
2 Cover with an upturned bowl or cup to prevent a crust from forming. To store, roll the mixture into a ball, double wrap in clingfilm and keep in a sealed container at room temperature for up to two weeks.
Colouring fondant and half and half
- shop-bought white fondant or Half and Half
- white vegetable fat, for greasing
- drops of paste food colouring (as directed by the recipe)
1 Add as many drops of paste food colouring as directed by the recipe. When instructed to add a dab of colouring, use the end of a cocktail stick to pick up a very small amount of colouring, then mix it in the fondant or Half and Half.
2 Lightly grease the work surface with a little white vegetable fat and knead the mixture until evenly coloured. If necessary, add a little vegetable fat to the icing to prevent it from becoming sticky. Add more food colouring as needed until the colour is the desired shade.
Piping gel blood (Makes about 85 g/3 oz)
- 85 g/3 oz clear piping gel
- 45 drops red paste food colouring
Put the piping gel in a small bowl, add the paste food colouring in drops or on a cocktail stick or the tip of a knife and beat in until you achieve a deep blood red colour.
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/350°F/Gas Mark 4. Line a 12-hole muffin tin with 12 large paper baking cases. Put the eggs, 3 tablespoons of the soured cream and the almond and vanilla extracts in a bowl and mix together. Add the pink food colouring in drops or on the end of a cocktail stick and mix well together until evenly coloured deep pink.
2. Sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt into a large bowl. Stir in the almonds and sugar. Add the butter and remaining soured cream and, using an electric whisk, beat together until combined. Gradually beat in the egg mixture until combined. Spoon the mixture into the paper cases. Bake for about 20 minutes, turning once halfway through baking, until well risen and firm to the touch. Transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool.
3. When the cupcakes are cold, use your thumb to press an eye socket shape into the top of each.
4. Dust the work surface with cornflour and roll out the fondant to a thickness of 3 mm/1/8 inch. Using a 6.57.5-cm/21/227/8-inch round cutter, cut out 12 rounds that will cover the cupcakes. Press one onto the top of each cupcake.
5. To make the eyeballs, squeeze an eyeball-sized amount from one end of the white Half and Half, then roll it in your fingers to narrow the base. Pull it away from the rest of the Half and Half, and cut with a craft knife so that the eyeball stem is about 2.5 cm/1 inch long. Repeat to make another 11 eyeballs.
6. Divide the brown Half and Half into 12 equal-sized pieces, and roll each piece into a ball. Roll each ball into a sausage shape, flatten and then cut at an angle at one end to create an eyebrow shape. Attach to the cupcake above the eye socket with water.
7. To make the irises for the eyeballs, roll the blue Half and Half out very thinly on a work surface dusted with cornflour. Use the large end of a small plain piping nozzle to cut out 12 x 1-cm/1/2-inch rounds. Use water to attach one iris to each eyeball. Roll the black Half and Half out very thinly. Use the small end of the nozzle to cut out 12 pupils. Attach a pupil to the centre of each iris with water.
8. Create the appearance of arteries on the eyeballs by drawing on branching lines with the red edible marker pen.
9. Fill the eye sockets with Piping Gel Blood. Sink the stem of an eyeball into the gel in each cupcake and then use water to attach the eyeball to the edge of the cupcake, as if the eyeball has popped out of its socket.
Taken from Zombie Cupcakes.