This weekend, is the Jubilee long weekend in the UK. Monday and Tuesday are public holidays and all of London has gone completely Jubilee Mad. I have to say its a pretty good reason to celebrate – 60 years as Monarch is a pretty massive achievement!!
Its so fun seeing all of the celebration preparations and Jubilee Fever is certainly catching… the kids all went to school this morning in red, white and blue clothes, streets are being decorated in union jack bunting, local parks are having fun fairs and there a loads of local street parties.
Of course we sisters couldn’t be left out. Ali came over yesterday afternoon for a little Jubilee tea party and we had a great time making Royal Earl Grey Cupcakes and Berry Vanilla Blue White and Red Jelly Cups. I have to say baking to a theme is so fun, we could have baked Jubilee inspired goodies for days!
Royal Earl Grey Cupcakes
230g plain flour
1 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
180g unsalted butter, softened
220g caster sugar
¼ tsp vanillla
40 ml milk
85ml very strong earl grey tea
4 egg whites
25g caster sugar
We used the chocolate meringue buttercream that Ali made for my birthday cake, see here for recipe.
Your Royal Highness Crown toppers –
Candy Chocolate Melts
or you can temper your own chocolate. ( One of these days we’ll do a tempering chocolate post, it really is quite fun, but a little more time consuming than the already done candy melts if you have them!)
Preheat oven to 180°C. Line a 12-cup muffin tray with large cupcake cases.
Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a medium mixing bowl and set aside.
Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar (220g) together until light and fluffly. Beat in the vanilla. Mix the milk and tea together. On low speed add a third of the flour mixture and beat until combined. Follow with half of the milk and then continue alternating with the remaining flour and milk. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and set aside.
Ensuring the bowl and whisk attachment are clean, beat the egg whites on low speed until foamy. While the mixer is running gradually add the remaining sugar. Beat on high speed until thick glossy peaks form. Gently fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the cake batter. Fold until combined and then add the remaining egg whites.
Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tray, filling to about 2cm below the cupcake case. Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes. Tip from tray onto a wire rack to cool.
When cooled completely, ice and top with decoration.
To make our Crown Toppers we did some drawings on a sheet of baking paper, secured the baking paper onto a baking tray with the pencil side of the paper facing down (so none of the lead gets into your chocolate!) Then we used a writing nozzle to pipe our melted candy melts over our crown pictures. We tried a few freehand after we had the hang of it. Was lots of fun.
When the chocolate has set you can carefully remove them from the baking sheet. Turn them over so that the smooth edge is the one on show and place them onto your cupcakes. We think they look super cute.
So now for the Jelly’s.
I had some raspberry jelly mix already in the cupboard so I did cheat a little and use that for the red layer. But the blue and white layer I made using fine leaf gelatine sheets. It was super easy, just a little time to wait for each layer to set enough to our on the next. A couple of tricks to speed this up and ensure it works…
* When making your second colour, transfer the hot jelly into a couple of smaller jugs and refrigerate before you pour them into the moulds. This will help cool down the liquid quicker so you can pour it onto the other colour.
* Make sure the first colour is touch set before you pour the second layer and make sure that the second layer liquid is at least room temperature before you pour it, otherwise it will melt your already set first layer as you pour and then you’ll end up with a fading change instead of clear colour blocks.
So my blue layer was blueberry flavour:
Combine 1/2 cup of blueberries, 1/3 cup sugar and 600ml of boiling water in a medium saucepan. Stir until the sugar dissolves. Meanwhile soak 5 sheets of gelatine in some cold water. Add some blue food colouring to your hot water and blueberry mix. After 5-10 minutes of soaking remove each sheet of gelatine from the cold water, squeezing out any excess water. Turn on the heat to bring your blueberry liquid to a simmer. Do not bring it to boil. Add your gelatine sheets to the hot water mix and continue to stir for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool before pouring into moulds and placing in the refrigerator to set. I set mine with the blueberries still inside for an extra flavour burst, if you like you can use a fine sieve and strain them out.
The white (or clear) layer was vanilla flavour:
Combine 1 vanilla pod, 1/3 cup of sugar and 600ml boiling water in a medium saucepan. Meanwhile soak 5 sheets of gelatine income cold water. After 5-10 minutes of soaking remove each sheet of gelatine from the cold water, squeezing out any excess water. Turn on the heat to bring your vanilla liquid to a simmer. Do not bring it to boil. Add your gelatine sheets to the hot water mix and continue to stir for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. Before pouring into moulds, remove the vanilla pod. Place moulds in the refrigerator to set. (If your doing the layers check my notes above)
With 3 colours and 600ml of liquid each I ended up with 9 full jelly cups. I have always loved jelly and now it seems so do my boys.. they scoffed 2 each ( and so did I!)
Happy Jubilee Weekend to you all. Wherever you are, use it as an excuse to bake some treats and let us know about it!