Its Valentines and what a perfect excuse for a bit of baking and blogging! I’ve been thoroughly spoiled by my hubby with roses, chocolates and some David Smallcombe sterling silver cuff bracelets I have been lusting after. He worked from home today so he wouldn’t be late home from the office to enjoy a lovely dinner together. My intention was to bake his favourite Custard Cream Heart cookies but everywhere was sold out of vegetable shortening. So I decided to bake these Love Buns to mark the occasion. I’ve baked these in the past and they have a very light and fluffy sponge. I never make the white frosting the recipe specifies. Personally I can’t stand it and I prefer to use buttercream, which tastes and looks so much more appealing. Of course I had to dye my buttercream pink and add some Valentine sprinkles. I hope everyone is having a wonderful Valentine’s Day and being spoiled rotten.
For the buns
125g soft butter
125g caster sugar
125g plain flour
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp real vanilla extract
2-3 tbsp milk
150g (5oz) butter, softened
300g (11 oz) icing (confectioners) sugar, sifted
1 tbsp milk
¼ tsp vanilla extract
Edible pink food colouring
Sprinkles for decoration of choice
Take everything out of the fridge to bring to room temperature - this makes a huge difference to the lightness of the love buns later - preheat the oven to 200oC/fan oven 180oC/gas mark 6.
Put all the ingredients for the buns, except for the milk, into a food processor and blitz until smooth. Pulse while adding the milk down the funnel, to make a smooth dropping consistency.
Divide the mixture into a 12-bun muffin tin lined with muffin papers or heart patterned cases, and bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes. They should have risen and be golden on top: you want a little peak if possible.
Let them cool a little in their tin on a rack, and then take them carefully out of the tin to cool in their papers, still on the wire rack.
To make the buttercream, beat the butter until soft. Add the icing sugar and stir until it’s just mixed in, then add the milk and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy. Add few drops of food colouring and beat.
Spread the icing on thickly with a palette knife on top of each cupcake or put the icing into a piping back and make a large swirl on top of each cupcake. Decorate each cupcake with your chosen sprinkles.
Ollie my grandson is now 3 months and a bundle of love and joy in my life!