What’s A Cupcake Worth To You?

I like to think of myself as a passionate baker – I’m quite a passionate cake eater too…I love both creating unique and colourful cakes and finding amazing cupcakes to try when I’m out and about. Usually my love for cake will result in me ‘splashing out’ on the £3 – £4 cupcakes and muffins in popular coffee shops such as Starbucks and Costa, but a gentlemen in Toronto decided to extend his love for cake even further by commissioning a $900/£540 cupcake for his wife’s 40th birthday, hence making it the most expensive cupcake in the world after beating the previous record of $750 for the Decadence D’Or cupcake from The Palazzo in Las Vegas.

Le Dolci Bakery in Toronto created a cupcake that contained both his and his wife’s favourite things. These included –

 

The Most Expensive Cupcake In The World

Inside the Cupcake is:

  • Artisan Beer
  • Valhrona Cocoa powder
  • The cream filling is flavoured with a bottle of Krug Collection Brut Champagne worth £500 in the UK and,
  • Rosewood Estate Honey

The Chocolate Icing is made from:

  • Butter made by a historic Normandy dairy cooperative
  • 70% Amedei Italian Chocolate from Tuscany
  • Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee
  • French sea salt from the Carmargue Region
  • Organic cane sugar
  • Tahitian Vanilla beans

It’s decorated with:

  • A chocolate cup with gold flakes, gold strips and diamonds made out of sugar
  • Gold leaf
  • As well as edible gold fondant flora and fauna
  • Caviar Bubbles made using molecular gastronomy
  • Diamond sprinkles
  • And a pipette of 21-year-old Courvoisier Cognac to drizzle over the cupcake before eating it!

All of these create a cupcake with “undertones of honey, caramel, lavender, vanilla, banana and orange blossom.” The creator and owner of the bakery Lisa Sanguedolce described the cupcake’s decorations like this:

The cupcake sits in a hand-made, edible chocolate cup garnished with crunchy edible pearls and dusted with 24-karat gold flakes. It is adorned with edible gold-painted branch with leaves, fondant flowers edged in gold, edible sugar diamonds and delicate hand made champagne caviar bubbles. It also features a pipette filled with limited edition Courvoisier that is drizzled atop the cupcake before consumption.

Sounds pretty impressive right? Apparently the husband and wife duo were “super happy” with the results, which is just as well after the amount they paid for it! But is this cupcake really too good to eat? And is it really worth spending this much money for? After all you can’t have your cake and eat it too…All I know is I definitely wouldn’t mind a taste.

What do you think – fancy a taste? How much would you spend on a cupcake?…

What’s A Cupcake Worth To You?

Chocolate and Chilli Shortbread

When the sun is shining you’re bound to have guests coming over, whether it’s for afternoon tea or just for a quick catch up. If you’re like me and love a good coffee afternoon then finding the perfect treat to enjoy with friends is exactly what you need, and what could be better than some homemade shortbread?…Well how about one with a twist –

Chocolate & Chilli Shortbread ~ 

 Makes 15        Prep: 15 mins + chilling time        Total Time: 45 mins + chilling & cooling

Chocolate and Chilli Shortbread

Ingredients

  • 175g plain flour
  • 25g cocoa powder
  • 125g soft unsalted butter
  • 100g caster sugar, (plus extra for sprinkling)
  • 2 pinches of chilli flakes
  • 50g dark chocolate chips
  • 50g white chocolate, melted

Recipe

  1. Put the flour, cocoa, butter, sugar and chilli flakes into a food mixer and pulse until the mixture comes together into a soft, clay-like dough.
  2. Tip the dough into a bowl and mix the chocolate chips in. Put this onto a piece of clingfilm and shape into a log about 5cm wide in diameter, wrap around the clingfilm and chill in the fridge for at least an hour so it firms up.
  3. Whilst this chills, preheat the oven to 160°C/140°C fan/gas mark 3 and line two baking sheets. Once the dough has finished chilling cut the log into about 15 pieces, 1cm thick. Place your biscuits onto the lined sheets and bake for 22-25 minutes. Once cooked leave to cool completely before drizzling the melted white chocolate over the top.

These cookies will keep for up to 3 days in an air-tight container – if left un-iced they can be frozen.

156 kcals, 8g fat (5g sat. fat), 2g protein, 1g fibre, 19g carbs, 11g total sugars, 0g salt

All you need now is a pretty plate (or even a tiered stand if you want to be really fancy!), a hot drink and someone to enjoy them with! As always let me know how you get on and enjoy!

I Dream In Chocolate

“Let’s face it, a nice creamy chocolate cake does a lot for a lot of people; it does for me” – Audrey Hepburn

Over the past few years I have definitely sought comfort in chocolate on many occasions. Whether it be drinking a mocha whilst working, or having dark chocolate truffles during yet another Nicholas Sparks movie (along with the mandatory bunch of tissues of course). But hey chocolate doesn’t judge you for having bad bed hair or knowing all the words to High School Musical (watching it on repeat for 8 hours with your nieces will do this to you).

Chocolate is A-MAZ-ING. Period.

But my point for this post other than declaring my love of chocolate, is to share with you my all time favourite chocolate pudding recipe. The kind of pudding people demand you make for them. The kind of pudding you relish making and have to stop yourself from eating all of. And most importantly, the kind of pudding that makes you smile like a Cheshire cat no matter how horrid you’re feeling.

MY OH SO Saucy Chocolate Pudding

Ingredients:

Evernote Camera Roll 20130703 152924For the cakey bit –

  • 1/2 pint of milk
  • 75g dark chocolate
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 100g butter
  • 150g self-raising flour
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder

For the saucy bit –

  • 3 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 50g light muscovado sugar
  • 300ml boiling water

Serves 4 (Well it’s meant to but I doubt you’ll be able to resist it so probably 2 servings, maybe 3 if you’re really good!)

  1. Lightly grease an 850ml oven dish (a big Pyrex dish would be perfect for this)
  2. Break the chocolate into the milk in a saucepan and gently heat. Keep stirring until the chocolate has melted and then leave to cool.
  3. Beat the caster sugar and butter together in a bowl until light and fluffy. Then sieve the flour and cocoa powder in, and gradually add the chocolate milk. You may need to whisk it to get it completely smooth and once it is pour it into the prepared dish and put to one side.
  4. Next you need to make the sauce. Mix the sugar and cocoa powder together, adding a small amount of boing water to make a paste and then gradually pouring the rest in to make the sauce. Pour the sauce over the cake type mixture made in step 3 but DO NOT MIX IT IN!
  5. Place the dish in a preheated oven at 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4 for around 40 minutes depending on your oven. It should be dry and springy on the top. Let it stand for a few minutes and then DIG IN!

TOP TIP: Place the dish with the cakey mixture from step 3 on the tray in the oven before pouring the sauce made in step 4 into it – this prevents any mixing or spillages when moving the dish into the oven 🙂

This makes the most delicious chocolate pudding you will ever have, trust me. Serve it with yoghurt, cream or my personal favourite, ice cream. Or just eat it right out of the dish, it’s that good! It’s better if you eat it straight out of the oven, but leftovers eaten the next day are just as good – just add some boiling water and reheat it to make more sauce. For something a bit more sophisticated you can make it into a mocha saucy pudding by adding a tbsp of instant coffee to the cocoa powder and sugar in step 4 before making the paste and therefore sauce.

I guarantee this will make you feel so much better, it is literally a miracle pudding and believe me, you will be dreaming in chocolate for days!

“All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt” – Charles M. Schulz