It is nearly the middle of September and yet the temperature hovers around 34C (93F)˚ – apparently the highest temperature recorded this month since 1911 in the UK. I am sat at my computer desk with a cold drink in my hand trying to write up this post. I have to admit it has been hours and I am still on line three. But I do have something sweet and delicious to keep me going – the fluffiest, yummiest coffee and walnut cupcake ever. And since I take my coffee seriously it is made with concentrated cold brew coffee so it has quite the kick. This cupcake was the first thing I made in my brand new KitchenAid Mini – a.k.a the cutest stand mixer to ever grace the planet.
- For the cupcakes
- 165 g | 5.8oz plain flour
- 165 g | 5.8oz soft brown sugar
- 55 g | 2oz walnuts
- 2 squares honeycomb optional
- 1/2 tbsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 100 g | 3.5oz cold unsalted butter cubed
- 2 large eggs
- 100 g | 3.5oz sour cream
- 2 tbsp cold brew coffee or 1 tbsp instant espresso powder
- 1 tsp vanilla paste
- a little butter and flour to grease the muffin tin or use cupcake cases
- Coffee buttercream
- 250 g | 8.8oz icing sugar
- 85 g | 3oz unsalted butter at room temperature
- 1-2 tbsp double cream or milk
- 1 tbsp cold brew coffee
- 1 tsp vanilla paste
- For the honeycomb
- 200 g | 7oz sugar
- 5 tbsp golden syrup
- 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- a little butter to grease the tin
- To make the honeycomb, grease and line a square 20cm/8in tin. Live with baking paper and grease the paper as well. Put all the ingredients in a deep saucepan and stir over medium low heat until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat slightly so that the caramel comes to a boil and turns a deep amber colour. Turn the heat off and beat in the baking soda - the honeycomb will bubble up so be careful it is extremely hot. Pour into the prepared tray and allow to cool completely until it sets. Break into pieces and store in an airtight container.
- Preheat the oven to 180C (350F). Grease two silicone muffin tins with butter (if you have trustworthy ones - they can be sticky!) or line with cupcake cases.
- Put the walnuts, honeycomb and one tablespoon of flour in a mini food chopper and pulse until finely ground.
- Add the flour, sugar, the walnut/honeycomb, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt into the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the whisk. Whisk on low speed to mix the ingredients together.
- Add the cubed butter and whisk until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
- Add the eggs and whisk briefly until they are incorporated.
- Combine the sour cream, cold brew coffee and vanilla and add to the mixing bowl. Whisk for 3 minutes at maximum speed until the batter is smooth. You may need to scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula to make sure everything is well mixed.
- Divide the batter into the muffin tin and bake for about 25 minutes. The cupcakes are ready when springy to the touch and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
- Cool on a wire rack, run a knife around the muffin tin edge to loosen and then gently turn the cupcakes out of the tins. Leave them to cool completely before frosting.
- Place the icing sugar, butter, coffee and vanilla in the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the flat blade. Start mixing on the lowest speed setting, gradually increasing the speed once the ingredients are combined.
- Increase the speed to maximum and beat together for 4-5 minutes until frosting is light and fluffy. Add the double cream and continue to beat together until incorporated. Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a French tip or star tip.
- Pipe the buttercream over the cupcakes. Drizzle with a little chocolate sauce and decorate with a few shards of honeycomb.
To turn this into a layer cake, divide the batter between 3x 15cm /6in greased and lined cake tins. Bake for 25-28minutes. You may want to double the buttercream recipe if you intend to cover the cake with frosting.