Three years ago I started the first online cupcake business in Cape Town called ‘The Cupcake Kitchen’ and I had so much fun with my first little business venture. I had been to London and Anuga in October 2007 and had seen firsthand the excitement around cupcakes. These vanilla cupcakes with vanilla buttercream and salted caramel are one of my favourites.
I spent the initial 6 months scouring the Internet and doing research on all cupcake businesses I could click on in the world. I tested dozens of recipes until I found what I perceived to be the best.
I conjured up many exciting variations and combinations, but in the end, over the two-and-a-half-odd years, I baked these whimsical and magical little cakes, at least 90% of my orders were for chocolate and vanilla.
I needed a recipe that delivered the perfect taste and texture, but one which was also user-friendly to make since I baked every single cupcake myself, and sometimes up to 700 per day. I adapted and simplified many of the baking methods, and this vanilla cupcake recipe is one of them.
So many people I meet seem afraid of baking as if it is a mysterious and difficult skill to master. It can be tricky, but I have found that once you understand a few of the basic principles and practice doing it a lot, you kind of develop an almost six sense around it. I love the fact that it is precise, it more or less guarantees the results, and when you have a solid recipe in place, it’s the base from which you can start playing with variations and flavours.
Feel free to omit the salted caramel and just frost the cupcakes with vanilla buttercream.
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The recipes make 28 – 32 depending on how you fill the cases
salted caramel recipe click here
Vanilla cupcakes with vanilla buttercream & salted caramel
- vanilla cupcakes: I use this recipe to make a standard vanilla sponge cake too
- 220 gms 2 sticks of butter at room temperature
- 2 cups /400gms granulated sugar
- 4 large free-range eggs at room temperature
- 3 cups/360gm cake flour flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup/ 250ml milk
- vanilla buttercream:
- 5.5 cups icing sugar
- 270 gms butter at room temperature
- 1/4 cup milk
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C (350 F)
- ream the sugar and the butter in an electric mixer until light and fluffy
- Add each egg one at a time, mixing well after each addition * TIP: I always break the egg in a small separate bowl in case any shell breaks off you can fish it out before adding to the mix
- Its almost impossible to overmix at this stage - so I let it go until the mixture has become very light and fluffy
- In another bowl sift together the flour and baking powder
- Turn the mixer to a low setting and slowly add the milk and flour in 3 parts, allowing it to blend a bit before adding the next bit
- Do not over-mix! I literally mix until all the ingredients are just combined
- Scrape down the bowl with a spatula and mix by hand a few turns to get it all in
- I use an ice cream scoop which makes this step so much easier. Scoop the batter into muffin pans that have been lined with paper cups. You want to fill the liner to roughly 3/4 of the way up
- Bake for 20 minutes until the cupcakes are just turning golden brown
- Allow to cool on the pan before removing to decorate
To make the icing:
- Place all the icing ingredients into a bowl and mix on medium to high until it becomes white and fluffy.
I look forward to connecting with you again in the future.
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