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It’s a great time to bake with little ones!

Wednesday, 1st April, 2020 5:16pm

It is wonderful seeing all the photos online about mums baking and cooking with their children at the moment. I have seen some amazing creations.

It reminds me off all the times I baked with Little Miss Sophie and the confidence she had when it came to decorating the baked goods afterwards.

One time, we baked a birthday cake for her dad and I showed her how to pipe butter icing. After a few attempts, she started to get the hang of it, stood back looking at her creation and stated with the confidence only a seven year old (back then) can have: “I am much better than you at piping”. And I had to nod as this type of confidence was unknown to me when I was that age.

She just had to learn when to stop as the cake consisted in the end of more icing than cake but it was made with love and all the gusto of youth. So, seeing now all the mums posting photos of their little bakers, I can’t help but hope that this won’t be over when we return back to our lives when this is all over.

I thought I’d share with you Little Miss Sophie’s favourite cupcake recipe (it is actually a muffin recipe but since it is all about the icing, we have named it a cupcake). It is very easy to make and I try to always have white chocolate chips at hand when Little Miss Sophie is coming over.

White chocolate chip muffins

300g self-raising flour

150g caster sugar

140g white chocolate chips

60g butter, melted

180ml milk

1 medium egg, slightly beaten

Sift all the dry ingredients into a bowl. Mix the cooled butter, milk and egg and stir into the flour mix with a wooden spoon. Don’t overbeat it. Fill into muffin mould (I always use paper cases – saves a lot of washing up) and bake in the pre-heated oven at 180C for about 25 minutes or until baked through.

I tend to eat them when they are still warm (not hot) as the white chocolate is still a bit gooey - and who doesn’t love gooey chocolate? If you feel nutty, you can also add a handful of nuts like walnuts, macadamia etc.

And if you are like Little Miss Sophie who thinks that every muffin deserves to be turned into a cupcake, here is the buttercream icing recipe we use.

Buttercream:

125g soft unsalted butter (your life will be much easier with soft butter in this case)

240g icing sugar (sifted, especially when the icing sugar is a bit lumpy)

2 tbsp milk

Start by beating the butter with an electric mixer (life is too short to do this with a wooden spoon) until the butter gotten lighter in colour (it should be almost white, better for colouring it afterwards). Gradually beat in the sugar and milk, alternating between both. Keep beating until the buttercream is smooth.

This buttercream is easy to pipe. The last time I made this, I forgot the milk and was wondering why it was so difficult – and had to apologise to Little Miss Sophie and her sister as they were trying really hard to do perfect swirls. I always use gel colour for my icings but you can use the liquid one available in most supermarkets.

I hope your children enjoy these tasty muffins/cupcakes as much as we do. Let me know how you got on!

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