16 March 2017

Beer Batter Cupcakes

Apprehension aside, due to the Irish affliction of not being able to talk positively about your accomplishments without someone commenting about your notions... These cupcakes tasted AH-MAZING!!!

I was totally blown away by the malty, toffee flavour of the ale left over after baking. Not something you usually get when adding pale ale, or light beer to a bake.. my experience has been that the flavour dulls or tends to evaporate altogether!

When tasked with making treats for Super Saturday, the last weekend of the Six Nations, I thought about what folk usually consume when watching sports. Beer and crisps is honestly my go to and possibly the best I could do given my zero interest in sports in the first place. But dwelling on the beer and crisps notion.. I thought why not combine them into a cupcake. Because who doesn't like cupcakes??

Am I right??

Aldi have some really great craft beers in store and I really enjoyed the Dungarvan Brewing Company's American Pale Ale. Being a major fan of Aldi's Okey Dokeys crisps I thought I would lash the two together and see what I got. Re-imagining my own tried and tested very vanilla cupcake recipe, I added the ale and much to my (and literally everyone who tasted them) delight, that malty, toffee undertone stayed true. The beer offset the sweetness of the buttercream and added a nice counterbalance to the bacon flavour of the crisps.

These cupcakes worked out a charm.

Beer Batter Cupcakes 

125g of room temperature butter
225g caster sugar
275g self raising flour
A half a teaspoon of baking powder
2 large free range room temperature eggs
125ml buttermilk
125ml Dungarvan Brewery American Pale Ale

Preheat your oven to 350F/180C/160C fan or Gas mark 4. Line a 12 tray cupcake pan with cases. (I used a 6 tray and made mini donuts for decoration with  my left over batter!)

Cream your butter and sugar until light and fluffy and pale. Add in an egg, one at a time until the yolks have been incorporated.

Dry whisk or sieve your flour and the baking powder together. Add half your dry ingredients to the butter/sugar/egg combination and then half the buttermilk. Mix until combined and repeat. Be careful not to over mix the batter here as you want them to stay light and fluffy. Just make sure all the ingredients have been mixed together.

Fold through the beer, gently.

Fill your cases to two thirds full. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. You know they are done when the tops are golden, have a slight spring in them when you gently push down or a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clear!

Allow to cool on a wire rack until cold and ready to be used. 

Toffee Sauce

Cook 125g butter and 180g of dark brown sugar in a medium non stick pan over a medium heat for two to three minutes, until the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved.
Whisk in 200ml of double cream and bring the entire thing to a light boil, stirring constantly.

Turn off the heat and allow to stand until it's cooled slightly, stirring often.

Toffee Buttercream

225g soft, room temperature, unsalted butter
500g sifted icing sugar
up to 60ml cream/whole milk
few tbsp of toffee sauce to your taste

Using an electric mixer, beat the butter on high until it is very soft and pale. (TIP: pop the butter in the microwave for a few seconds until very soft.)
Add in the icing sugar a few cups at a time.
If the buttercream is very thick, add a tablespoon of cream or milk in until the desired texture has been reached. 
Add a few tablespoons of the toffee sauce.

Mix the whole until light and fluffy. The faster and longer you mix this, the lighter and fluffier it will be. 

Once the cupcakes have cooled and the toffee sauce thickened, pipe the buttercream on in mounds. Garnish with a drizzle of the left over toffee sauce and sprinkle on some bacon flavour crisps. 

Honestly the beer, crisps and sweet combo work really well here! Try it.. you won't regret it!

***Disclaimer: Sponsored Post*** 
Aldi very kindly, provided me with the ingredients to bring this post together.
All comments and views however, are completely my own.

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