Red currants are bright red little jewels with a lovely sweet-sour taste that makes sweet vanilla cupcakes sing. The summer is coming to the end so do not ponder, just try them : )
Ingredients for 8 cupcakes:
50g soft unsalted butter
140g caster sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg
120g cake flour sifted
1 tsp baking powder
25 ground almonds sifted
120g sour cream
120g washed and de-stalked red currants
Proceed as usual with the cupcakes : with a hand held mixer beat butter with sugar, add vanilla then the egg and beat well. Add flour and almonds and mix briefly till the flour is not visible, then add the cream and mix it in. Put the mixer aside, add red currants and mix with a spatula or a wooden spoon.
Line a cupcake baking tin with 8 paper cases and distribute the batter evenly – I like to use an ice cream scoop, that makes the portions even and the work much cleaner than the usual tablespoons.
Bake at 180 C for about 25 minutes till the cupcakes are nicely golden. Let them cool and then take care of the icing. Though I am rather partial to plain version dusted lightly with icing sugar. And with those you do not have to wait till they are completely cooled, which is of utmost importance, if the cupcakes are prepared on the spur of the moment to satisfy some serious Sunday afternoon craving : )
Ingredients for the mascarpone icing enough to ice 4-5 cupcakes (if needed for more, double the proportions):
250g box of mascarpone cheese
50g icing sugar (the icing will be sweet but not overly, if you feel differently, please adjust the quantity of sugar according to your taste)
50-70g washed and de-stalked red currants for decoration
With a hand held mixer beat together chilled mascarpone and icing sugar till creamy and keeping its shape, but do not over beat as it will harden and might split. Now you can start decorating, which seems to be the most exciting thing. I suggest making nice swirls with a piping bag and a big open star tip. Then drop casually some red current berries on the swirl to make it look effortlessly elegant. Or you might use ice cream scoop to form semi spheres that look like ice cream servings. In that case mix a handful of red currents into the icing.
I do hope you will like them : )