Monthly Archives: July 2012

Salted caramel cupcakes

My love of all things salted caramel has led me to attempt to make some cupcakes in the same theme and they turned out pretty well. The cakes are light enough not to be sickly, while the subtle splodge of salted caramel in the icing gives just the right amount of the heavenly stuff.

Salted caramel cup cakes


200g butter

3 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla essence

100g caster sugar

100g dark brown sugar

200g plain flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

For the icing:

500g icing sugar

100ml double cream

20g butter

For the caramel

200g ungranulated brown sugar

150ml double cream

1 teaspoon of salt

Between three and six tablespoons of water

How to make:

  • First make the caramel sauce by dissolving the un-granulated sugar on a low heat in the water. Three tablespoons should be enough but if it’s not dissolving add a few more.
  • As soon as it’s all mixed in turn the heat up and boil until the mixture turns a darker brown, this should take around three minutes and don’t leave it any longer as you may burn it altogether.

The boiling

  • Next splash in the cream and make sure everything’s mixed, turn the heat off and set aside.
  • Preheat the oven to 180 (fan oven) and get a tray ready filled with cake cases and now get ready to start on the cakes.
  • Mix the sugars and butter by hand (five minutes) or by electric mixer (three minutes) until it’s very light and fluffy. You’re aiming for it to double in size before you mix in the vanilla essence and eggs.
  • Next sieve the dry ingredients and fold in with a metal spoon until everything’s incorporated. Add in three tablespoons of the caramel sauce and pour the mixture into the cake cases until each one is three-quarters full.
  • Give the tray several hard bangs on a flat surface and stick it in the oven for 20 minutes.
  • Keep an eye on the cakes and if they look light they’re getting a bit dark take them out.
  • Make the icing by mixing the sugar and icing with a little bit of water and beat away until it’s smooth. It’s very boring and time-consuming but if you want the icing to be light and fluffy then persevere, or ask a willing friend to help out.
  • Once it’s done, swirl in the caramel and dollop on top of the cakes in whatever style takes your fancy.
  • If you’re feeling very cakey you could go to the effort of piping on the mixture with a star-shaped end, or you could (as I’ve done) just swirl it around with a spatula.

Salted caramel cupcakes



Filed under Food

Vingt Quatre

Vingt Quatre

The eternal quest for food when I’ve been out drinking has been answered and comes in the form of the 24-hour diner VQ in Fulham.

Although it’s a bit of a trek from my flat in North London, the newly refurbished diner is everything you need when you want fast food (and alcohol) at any time of the day, or night.

The menu is pretty standard and includes all day breakfasts, burgers and main meals such as fish and chips (£11.95), slow cooked beef ribs (£15.95) or chilli con carne (£9.50) – and they also sell wine, beers and a small range of cocktails.

As a lover of breakfast, I’m a big fan of places selling it after 11am and VQ has a small but impressive range of dishes such as buttermilk pancakes with maple syrup and bacon (£7.95) or kedgeree (£8.95).

If you’re after something sweet choose the Knickerbocker Glory. It’s basic but it’s also everything you want from a retro pudding. The milkshake selection is also not to be missed – you’ll never look back from the Honeycomb (£4.50) flavour.

The one down side about VQ is the location. It sits on Fulham Road in the heart of Chelsea and everything about the place, from the cheap (ish) menu to the basic food  – doesn’t fit in with the rest of the area. However, a second branch is planned for next year so I’ve got my fingers crossed it’ll be North of the river.

This piece was originally written for Who’s Jack.

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Filed under Food, London