Want to make some scary Halloween cupcakes? Have a go at baking our exclusive vampire cat cupcakes from cupcake queen Victoria Threader, featuring orange buttercream topped with a black cat
- 12 x cupcakes of your choice
- For the reduced-sugar buttercream
- 240ml milk
- 60g plain flour
- Pinch of salt
- 110g vegetable fat (such as Trex)
- 110g unsalted butter
- 220g caster sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- For the vampire cat toppers:
- 240g black fondant
- 24 green sugar diamonds or Jelly Tots for the eyes
- 12 purple hearts for the nose (Victoria got her hearts and sugar diamonds from thecakedecoratingcompany.co.uk)
- 2 tbsp royal icing sugar
- A few drops of water
- Orange food colouring paste (Victoria used Sugarflair's Tangerine Apricot)
- Rolling pin
- Silicone mat
- Parchment piping bag
- Drying sponge (alternatively, you can use a large household sponge or greaseproof paper)
- Cat-shaped biscuit cutter
- Wilton 6B piping nozzle (optional)
Make your chosen cupcakes or opt for shop-bought cupcakes instead.
To make the vampire cat toppers:
- Roll out black fondant to ¼ inch thick. Cut 12 cat faces with a cutter and leave to dry on a drying sponge or greaseproof paper.
- When the cat faces have dried out a bit, stick the eyes and nose on with a touch of water. Using the leftover black fondant, make pupils for the eyes by rolling out tiny strips and sticking them onto the green sugar diamonds or tots.
- Mix the royal icing sugar with a couple of drops of water to make a paste. Make sure the paste isn’t too stiff otherwise it won’t pipe well. Pop the paste into the parchment piping bag and snip a tiny bit off the tip of the bag. Pipe a mouth, fangs and whiskers and leave to set.
To make the reduced-sugar buttercream:
- Add the milk to a small saucepan. Place over a low heat, whisk the flour and salt into the milk and heat gently while whisking continuously (to avoid lumps) until it forms a thick pudding consistency. Leave to cool for 30 minutes.
- In a separate large bowl, cream the vegetable fat, sugar, butter and vanilla with an electric mixer until light and fluffy.
- When the pudding has cooled, add it to the butter mix one dessert spoon at a time while whisking with the electric mixer, until all the pudding has been added. It will be very light in texture and quite white when it’s ready. Add the orange food colouring and mix until combined to the desired shade. Cool the buttercream for 15 minutes, as this helps stiffen it slightly.
- Once the cakes are cooled completely, spread the buttercream on tops of the cakes using a palette knife. Don’t spread it right up to the edges of the cases or the buttercream will squash over the sides when you put the fondant on. Alternatively, you can pipe the orange buttercream onto the cupcakes by attaching the nozzle of your choice (Victoria used a Wilton 6B) to a large piping bag and placing it in a large glass. Pull the bag down around the glass, fill the bag 2/3 full by pushing the buttercream down into the bag as you fill, then lift the bag up from around the glass. Where the buttercream stops, push all the air up out of the bag and twist the bag. Hold the twist between your thumb and forefinger, apply pressure and pipe a swirl by starting in the middle of the cake and working your way out to the edge of the paper case, using the edge as a guide. Follow it around and build up into a swirl. When you reach the end of the swirl press down slightly, release the pressure and pull up quickly. After you have piped a cupcake twist the bag again so the twist is always at the top of the buttercream.
- Place a vampire cat on top of each cake.