Christmas is a great time for baking and these little Rudolph cupcakes will make a cute centerpiece for any seasonal entertaining. You will find that each reindeer seems to have its own personality and you can have fun making each one a little different.
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- ... for the chocolate sponge
- 100g self raising flour, sifted
- 100g caster sugar
- 100g butter, softened
- 2 tablespoons cocoa
- 2 large eggs
- 1 small pinch of salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
... for the icing
- 2 cups icing sugar mixture, sifted
- 100g butter, softened
- 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 tablespoons cocoa
... for the decorations
- white chocolate bits (for eyes)
- red and brown chocolate beans (for noses)
- pretzel knots (for antlers)
- white chocolate buttons (for their snout)
- 50g dark chocolate, melted (for eyes)
- Preheat your oven to 170°C. Line a 12 hole patty pan tin with coloured paper patty pans.
- First make the sponge. In a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, add the softened butter and caster sugar and process until light and fluffy. Add the salt and vanilla extract and process again. Add one of the eggs, half the sifted flour, the second egg and then the cocoa and remaining flour. Process until you have a smooth batter, scraping the mixer bowl down at least once.
- Using 2 dessert spoons, divide the batter evenly between the 12 patty pans (each will be about half full of batter). Bake in the preheated oven for about 15 minutes or until the cakes are well risen and cooked through (check this by inserting either a metal skewer or thin knife. If it comes out clean the cakes are ready). Remove from the oven and allow to cool before icing and decorating.
- For the icing. In a stand mixer add 100g of softened butter, vanilla extract, the sifted cocoa and icing sugar mixture. Process till smooth and fluffy. Place the chocolate icing into a disposable piping bag with the small round nozzle fitted. Pipe the chocolate icing onto each cup cake starting in the center and then pipe in a circular pattern until each little cake is covered in icing.
- Place two small pretzel knots together just overhanging the edge of each cake to make your reindeer antlers. Place the large white chocolate button below the pretzels to make a snout and pipe a little chocolate icing in the center to stick down either a brown or red chocolate button to make your reindeers’ nose.
- Just below the pretzel antlers, stick down 2 small round white chocolate bits to make the eyes. Using a clean paintbrush, place a tiny dot of dark chocolate in the center of each eye and your reindeers are ready for Christmas adventures.