So I made a cake. A special one. The cake is chocolate, with a strawberry inside. When you cut into it it looks a bit like a heart, as well as taste blimmin' delicious. Each cake is topped with pale pink fondant, and a slightly darker pink ribbon, resembling the breast cancer ribbon worn by so many people who support breast cancer charities and raise awareness of the disease.
Pink Chocolate Cupcakes with a Strawberry Surprise
120g softened, salted butter
120g golden (unrefined) caster sugar
25g cocoa powder (I use Bourneville)
1 tsp vanilla essence
120g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
250g white fondant (ready to roll) icing
a few drops pink food colouring
12 small strawberries
First, mix together the butter and sugar until fluffy. Crack in the eggs and then the vanilla and cocoa powder. Give the whole thing a good mix together and when smooth, fold in the flour and baking powder. Divide between 12 cupcake cases and bake at 200ºC for 18-20 minutes until springy to the touch. Cool completely. (Don't attempt to start the next stage until the cakes are fully cooled - while warm they have a tendency to crumble apart, so it's definitely worth waiting for this.)
Once the cakes have cooled, take a small, sharp knife and chisel a triangular-shaped hole into the top and centre of the cupcake. Remove the piece of cake and very gently ease a washed and fully-dried strawberry into the hole. Cut the top of the strawberry if it sticks out, so it is flush with the top of the cake.
To make the icing, knead the fondant until smooth and pliable, adding 2-3 drops of pink food colouring as you go. Once you have a uniform, pink fondant dust a board with a little icing sugar and roll out to about 3-4mm thick. Using an up-turned glass or a cookie cutter, stamp out circles and place these over the top of your strawberry-filled cupcakes. With the remaining fondant, colour this a shade or two darker with the pink colouring and roll out into a narrow strip. Cut sections of the strip and twist to form a little ribbon-shape. Gently place on top of the cupcake and serve.
If you'd like to donate to this worthwhile cause, visit the Breast Cancer Care website for more details. Charities such as this one rely on donations to provide information and support to those affected by the disease.