Easter is fast approaching so it's time bring on the bunnies and chow down on chocolate. But before you do, save a little room for these Easter themed cupcakes. Loosely based on a traditional Simnel Cake these little delicacies are a delightful treat for any springtime gettogether. Marzipan can be a little hard to find sometimes, but if you are lucky enough to find a good store bought one, then it will save you a little time. If you can't find any, then have a go at making your own or if there is a nut allergy then skip the marzipan entirely and top these little beauties with a swirl of lemon frosting instead. Happy Easter!
1/3 cup Anita’s Organic Cane Sugar
1/3 cup Anita’s Organic Light Brown Sugar
1/3 cup sunflower oil
1 cup milk (non-dairy or regular)
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
¼ cup lemon juice
Zest 1 lemon
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 ¾ cup Anita’s Organic All Purpose White Flour
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp salt
1 cup mixed dried fruit (we used 1/3 cup each of our Thompson Raisins, Sultanas and Currant Raisins)
1 lb marzipan (shop bought or homemade)
Pre-heat the oven to 350F and line a 12-cup muffin tray with paper liners.
In a large bowl mix together the sugars, oil, milk, vinegar, lemon juice, lemon zest and vanilla extract. Set aside for a few minutes while you prepare the other ingredients.
Prepare 12 x discs of marzipan by rolling 1 tbsp of marzipan into a ball then flatten slightly into a disc. These will be used inside the cupcakes so make sure they will fit inside the muffin cup. Set them aside while you continue making the cupcakes.
In a medium size bowl sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, nutmeg and cinnamon. Stir in the salt.
Add the dried fruit to the wet mixture and stir. Add the flour mixture to the wet mixture and fold everything together until evenly combined, do not over mix.
Spoon 1 to 2 tablespoons of the cupcake batter into the bottom of each muffin cup and then place a disc of marzipan on top.
Spoon more cupcake batter on top of the marzipan discs, until the muffin liners are about ¾ full (if you have any extra batter left over just make 1 or 2 extra cupcakes).
Bake the cupcakes in the centre of the oven for 20 to 22 minutes – until an inserted wooden toothpick comes out clean. Once fully cooked remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tray for 10 minutes before transferring the cupcakes to a wire rack to cool fully.
While the cupcakes are cooling roll out the marzipan to about ¼ inch thick. Using a round cookie cutter or flower cutter, cut out your decorations for the tops of the cupcakes.
Brush a little apricot jam on the top of each cupcake and place the marzipan on top. Serve them as they are or lightly toast the tops of the cupcakes under a broiler until lightly golden brown.
Makes – 12 to 14