It's been a while since I made cupcakes, and had volunteered to make them for a kiddies Christmas party. As most of the children very toddlers, I decided mini cupcakes would be the best option, as they are sweet little bites, that won't get too messy, and the 'grown-ups' can just pop them in their mouth (if they want to!).
I used a recipe from a leaflet that I had picked up from a Viva Roadshow Fair, modifying the ingredients slightly.
Recipe for the cakes:
180g plain flour
half tsp bicarbonate soda
half tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
60ml sunflower oil
200ml sweetened soya milk
150g unrefined granulated sugar
1tsp vanilla essence
Juice of one whole lemon
Zest finely grated from one whole lemon.
I used a handheld whisk for the mixing.
Preheat the oven on a low heat (gas mark 3-4/ around 180C).
Set out a mini cupcake tray, and place your mini cupcake liners in the tray. The above recipe makes about 48 mini cupcakes, so if you only want a small amount, half the recipe, or make larger cakes, as each cupcake paper only takes about a teaspoon of the mixture (these are mini after all!).
Sift the flour, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder and salt into a large mixing bowl.
In a seperate bowl whisk together the oil, milk, lemon juice, lemon zest and sugar for about a minute, until the liquid mix becomes frothy.
Add the liquid mix to the dry ingredients, bit by bit until it's all in the one bowl, and mixed together to make a loose mix, that will plop into the cupcake liners easily.
Fill each cupcake liner about 3/4 full, allowing space for them to rise. I used a dessert spoon and a teaspoon for this.
Put in the middle shelf of the over, and allow to bake for about 10-15 mins, using a wooden skewer to test if the mixture is baked, by sticking the skewer into the centre of a cupcake, and checking if it comes out clean - if it does, they're baked, if it comes out sticky, they need a bit more time. They will look quite pale, but they are baked if the skewer comes out clean.
Let them cool on a wire rack, while you prepare the topping.
Recipe for the topping:
62g vegan margarine
62g vegetable shortening, such as Trex
500g icing sugar (sifted)
2 tsp vanilla essence
30ml sweetened soya milk
As with the cake ingredients, half the mixture to make a smaller amount.
Sift the sugar into a mixing bowl, add the other ingredients, and use a handheld mixer, to mix the ingredients into a fluffy cake topping. Make sure the cakes are cool. Use an icing syringe to decorate the cakes with the topping.
Here is a photo of the cupcakes, which were enjoyed by the children and adults alike!