Halloween Baking

I hadn’t done any baking for ages, until last Thursday evening when I decided to make some cupcakes for a Halloween charity fundraiser day at work last Friday. I don’t do home baking very often since it involves cake and sweet treats, which I absolutely love but should avoid eating too much of.

I made 9 vanilla cupcakes and 9 Oreo strawberry cheesecake cupcakes. Before making them I quickly looked up a basic recipe for cupcakes. I avoid guesstimating wherever possible with sweet treats, as I’m not great with guessing measurements for cakes. They either rise too much or don’t rise at all, or I put too much sugar in or don’t use enough butter etc.

I creamed together 110g of butter and 110g of caster sugar using an electric whisk. Once a soft texture was achieved, I gradually whisked in 2 beaten eggs, about a dessert spoon at a time. I then whisked in a teaspoon of vanilla extract for the vanilla cupcakes. Using a stainless steel spoon, I folded in 110g of sifted self-raising flour gradually until all of the flour was incorporated into the mixture, then stirred in a tablespoon of semi-skimmed milk to finish off a smooth cupcake mixture.

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9 vanilla cupcakes ready for baking

After diving the vanilla cupcake mixture into 9 cupcake cases, I put them into the oven at gas mark 4 for 20 minutes, until they were a pale golden colour. While these were cooking, I made the Oreo strawberry cheesecake mixture. I decided to reduce the amount of the main ingredients to 90g instead of 110g, and added 5 crushed Oreo strawberry cheesecake biscuits (about 50g). I didn’t add vanilla essence to the Oreo cupcakes, since I had the strawberry cheesecake flavour instead. The Oreo cupcakes went in the oven for the same amount of time as the vanilla cupcakes as well, at the same temperature.

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Oreo Strawberry Cheesecake on the left and Vanilla on the right

I had dinner with my dad while the cupcakes were cooling down. After dinner I made some icing to cover the tops of the cupcakes. I struggle with making icing for cakes, as icing sugar can be rather temperamental! Add too much water and the consistency is too runny. Add too much powder and the mixture becomes too thick (I sound like the Great British Bake Off!). I used the instructions on the side of the packet, which recommended 125g icing sugar with 15ml of warm water. I managed to make an icing with my preferred consistency for the cupcakes.

For the vanilla cupcakes I poured the plain icing onto the cupcakes and added chocolate sprinkles on top. For the Oero ones, I poured in a little bit of orange food colouring into the icing and sprinkled crushed Oreo strawberry cheesecake biscuits on top.

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Oreo on the left, vanilla on the right

I didn’t try any of the cupcakes before taking them to work for the bake sale, but some of them were sold. I tried one of each from the leftover cupcakes, and they both tasted fine to me. I like the Oero ones especially. They smelt amazing when they first came out of the oven; all I could smell was strawberries!

I enjoyed my day at work on Friday. I know that Halloween is actually on Monday, but the social committee decided to hold the Halloween day on Friday as Monday can be our busiest day, and it was more fun to end the week on a high with people dressed in costume, ready for any parties they might have gone to in the evening and over the weekend.

I dressed up as a devil, wearing a red vest top and black shorts with spider web patterned tights and a pair of boots which I hadn’t worn for a long time. Makeup wise I wore red eye shadow, red lipstick and fake blood. I also wore devil horns and had my trusty devil pitchfork at the ready.

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Dressed as a devil for work!
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My simple makeup
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Cool Halloween tights!

I found out on Friday that we had raised over £100 on the cake sale alone, which is fantastic! We all paid £2 each for dressing up, which also gave us a raffle ticket. I’ll probably find out how much we raised for a local children’s cancer charity very soon.

 

Happy reading and blogging!

Clare Bear

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