I decided late yesterday to make cupcakes today for Mr Monkey’s birthday dinner. I know he loves Jaffa flavours, I’m not much of a fan, so I had a look around for recipes. I came across this recipe on a random site – psnews.com.au and it seemed the best recipe I had found so far.
• 115g good-quality dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids) (I used Lindt)
• 90g unsalted butter, at room temperature
• 175g caster sugar, preferably golden
• Grated zest and juice of 1 orange (you need 75ml of juice)
• 2 large eggs, free-range or organic
• 185g plain flour, sifted
• ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
• ½ teaspoon baking powder
• ½ teaspoon salt
• 1 tablespoon semi-skimmed milk, at room temperature
Preheat the oven to 160°C (fan)/180°C/gas mark 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tray with the appropriate size cupcake cases.
Break the chocolate into pieces and place in a microwave-safe bowl. Melt on a medium setting in 30-second bursts until completely melted. Stir well between each session. Alternatively, place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water. Stir occasionally until completely melted. Set the bowl aside to cool.
In a large mixing bowl cream the butter, sugar and orange zest until the mixture is pale and smooth, which should take 3-5 minutes using an electric hand mixer. Add the eggs and beat again briefly.
Combine the flour, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Mix the milk and orange juice in a jug.
Add the chocolate to the creamed mixture and beat on a low speed until the mixture is just combined. The batter will still be streaky. Add one-third of the flour mix and beat until it all just comes together. Add half of the juice/milk mix and beat again until the mixture just comes together. Repeat these steps until all the ingredients have been incorporated.
Carefully spoon the mixture into the cupcake cases, filling them to about two-thirds full. Bake in the oven for about 28-30 minutes. To check they are cooked, insert a skewer in the centre of one of the cakes – it should come out clean.
Remove from the oven and leave the cakes in their tins for about 10 minutes before carefully placing on a wire rack to cool.
I filled the papers up a little too high and they overflowed but the cupcakes were still nice and moist.
This recipe had a chocolate buttercream frosting but we decided that a light orange frosting would be better. My favourite cupcake website – Cupcake Project has a fantastic chocolate cream cheese frosting which I have made before. So I decided to simply adjust the recipe but substituting orange marmalade for the cocoa.
• 125g cream cheese, room temperature
• 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
• 4 cups sifted powdered sugar (Adjust according to desired stiffness)
1/2 C cocoa powder250g orange marmalade
1. Mix cream cheese and butter until smooth and creamy.
2. >>Mix in marmalade.
3. Mix in powdered sugar, one cup at a time.
Mix in cocoa powder.
You may notice that this recipe is actually half of that on the CupcakeProject website. I have found when I’ve made this recipe before that I have a lot of frosting left over so thought I’d try halving the recipe this time. This worked fine for my 12 cupcakes and I actually still had more left over. I think it would’ve been better to add a bit more icing sugar as I wasn’t able to pipe it too well as it went quite runny. So I ended up just spreading it over the top of the cupcakes.
Mr Monkey then made some caramel and coated some orange zest which I just put on top. It was a nice, simple decoration.
They got great reviews from the family:
Mum – “Can definitely taste the marmalade in the frosting and I love marmalade!”
Dad – “They were nice.” (he’s a man of few words)
Mr Monkey – “Loved the chocolate. Tasted like Jaffas.”
Considering it’s the first time I’ve made these, I’m happy.