Summer Days

What a summer it has been so far! 😀

For so long you’d have to go abroad for the weather we’ve been having here in the UK. It’s been pretty amazing – although I’m sure there are those who think it’s a bad thing. There are always winners and losers.  For so long, we’ve had the strawberries, the G&T and the Pimms, just not always the weather to match. At least not for any length of time. So this is what it feels like to have a proper summer! Love it 😍

Whether or not, the fact that our national football team has been performing above expectations in the World Cup, is and will be, a matter for some debate. For me the fact is, that there is for now, something in the air. A real positive vibe, a buzz. And I can take that for as long as we’ve got it.

Long live summer and long may we have the time to enjoy the Pimms and the strawberries, in our gardens and open spaces. For long into the evening, for as long as it stays warm. It’s what a summer should be.

And to enjoy these summer days and evenings – a lovely Moist Strawberry, cream and Pimms Cupcake 😀😀🍓🍓🍹🍹

Line a 12 hole cupcake tray with cupcakes cases and preheat the oven to gas 4, 180c, 165c fan.

150g soft butter

135g caster sugar

3 eggs

140g gluten free self raising flour

30ml Pimms

milk to loosen the batter if required

Pop all the ingredients into a mixing bowl and using a hand held electric mixer and beat the lot together until light and fluffy and well combined.

Divide the batter between the 12 cases and bake for 24-28 minutes or until an inserted skewer comes out clean.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

120g strawberry jam

10 strawberries

30ml more Pimms

300ml double cream

20g icing sugar

12 mint leaves

You could do this next bit whilst the cupcakes are baking – carefully cut each strawberry in half from stalk to base, keeping the stalk in tact. Place them in a small breakfast bowl cut side down and pour over the Pimms. Leave this then to soak, for as long as possible. At least an hour and if you are really planned – overnight. You’ll get a lovely rich Pimms Syrup.

When you are ready to decorate, whip the cream with the icing sugar until stiff.

Scoop out the middle of the cupcakes and place around 10g of jam into the hole (more if you want to 😀), then pipe the whipped cream onto each cupcake and decorate with half a strawberry, mint leaf and a little of the liqueur left in the bowl.

Sit down and your cupcake with either a glass of Pimms or if you really want a treat, you can use the left over strawberries in a glass of prosecco or two.

 

 

 

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Anyone for tennis? Or a cupcake?

Although there isn’t any tennis actually on the blog, it is that time of year when the world goes tennis mad as Wimbledon is now upon us.

What better way of getting into the spirit of the occasion than producing some delicious cupcakes with two very seasonal ingredients that blend well together; Pimms and strawberries.

These might not be for Noah, but they’ll go down well with a glass of bubbly 😀.

You’ll need to think ahead before doing these, as the some of the strawberries will need steeping in the Pimms before putting in the finished cupcakes. Also, with this Pimms ‘marinade’ you will need to produce a syrup and allow it to cool before adding to the cake batter.

The recipe will make 12 cupcakes.

Start by soaking 12 small to medium-sized strawberries in 100ml of Pimms, for as long as you dare, but for at least an hour. Carefully remove the soaked strawberries and put to one side.

Take that marinade and top up to 100ml of additional Pimms and place into a saucepan with 2 table spoons of granulated sugar. Heat to boiling point, simmer for 2-3 minutes, switch off the heat and allow to cool in the pan, before starting the cake batter.

Preheat your oven to 160c fan, Gas 4 and line 12 hole muffin tray with cases. Then you’ll need;

170g soft butter

140g caster sugar

3 eggs

2 tablespoons of cold Pimms syrup

140g gluten free self raising flour

To ice

140g more of soft butter

280g icing sugar

red colour (optional)

at least a teaspoon of the remaining syrup to flavour

12 more strawberries for decoration.

Cream the butter and sugar until you have a light fluffy mixture by using an electric hand whisk. Beat in the eggs one at a time, ensuring each egg is well beaten in between mixes. Add in th 2 tablespoons of syrup, and mix in the flour slowly, so as not to knock out too much of the air you have just beaten in.

Divide between the 12 cases and bake for about 20 – 25 minutes. Or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool.

Whilst cooling you couple make the buttercream ready to pipe on.

Beat the 140g of butter until light and fluffy, pour in the icing sugar and at least a teaspoon of syrup, stir with a spoon to combine (and reduce the dust cloud that you would get if you went straight in the whisk), then whisk (using the electric hand-held whisk) until, again, its light and fluffy. Adding a tablespoon or two of hot water to make the mix ready to pipe.

Once the cupcakes are cold, scoop or core out the middle of the cupcake and place inside one of the Pimm’d strawberries, pipe on your buttercream and garnish further with another strawberry.

Deuce 🎾🎾🎾🎾