Chocolate and salted caramel cupcakes

Ingredients

For the cakes:
100g self-raising flour
125g softened butter
125g caster sugar
2 medium eggs
3 level tbsps cocoa
2 tbsps milk

For the icing:
200g sifted icing sugar
75g butter
150g caster sugar
65ml cold water
125ml double cream
1\2 tsp salt
1\2 tsp vanilla essence

Method

First the caramel:

  1. Put the caster sugar and the cold water in a small pan over a moderate heat until the sugar dissolves. Do not stir or your sugar will crystallise. Just be patient.
  2. Turn up the heat and let the mixture boil violently until it turns golden. This usually takes around 10-15 mins.
  3. Take off the heat and stir in the cream. It may spit – just keep stirring and whisk if necessary to get a smooth caramel.
  4. Stir in your salt and vanilla and leave to cool.

Second the cakes:

  1. Line a 16-hole muffin tray with papers & preheat oven to 18o°C.
  2. Put all the cake ingredients in a bowl, sifting together the flour and cocoa, and beat thoroughly.
  3. Dollop your mixture into the cases and bake for 12-15 minutes until just firm in the centre.
  4. Remove from tin and leave to cool on a wire rack.

Third the icing:

  1. Measure out 125ml of your warm caramel and place in a bowl with the butter.
  2. Beat them together until smooth.
  3. Sift in the icing sugar and combine with a spoon, then beat until smooth.
  4. Pipe the icing onto the cold cupcakes an decorate as you wish.
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