Halloween pumpkin spiced cupcakes
- October 2021
- Serves 12
- Hands-on time 25 minutes Oven time 20 minutes, plus cooling
Halloween baking is an excuse to get silly, so stir up a batch of pumpkin spiced cupcakes for All Hallows’ Eve. These mummies and ghosts are decorated with meringue frosting, chocolate chips and sugar eyes.
Try our seriously-spooky pumpkin muffins, too,
- 14g (8.4g saturated)
- 60.1g (47.2g sugars)
- 180g unsalted butter, softened
- 150g soft brown sugar
- 100g golden caster sugar
- 200g self-raising flour, sifted
- 2 large free-range eggs
- 2 tbsp pumpkin spice mix (see below)
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
For the pumpkin spice mix
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp allspice
- ½ tsp ground nutmeg
- ½ tsp ground cloves
For the meringue frosting
- 120g pasteurised egg white (we used Two Chicks, from large supermarkets;
equivalent to the whites from 3 large free-range eggs)
- 150g golden caster sugar
- 1 tsp cream of tartar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Chocolate chips
- 200g white fondant icing
- Icing sugar to dust
- Orange and black gel food colouring, or others if you prefer (optional)
- Sugar eyes (available from larger supermarkets or from Ocado)
You’ll also need
- 12-cup muffin tray, lined with paper liners or use a silicon tray
- Piping bag
- Heat the oven to 170°C fan/gas 5. Mix all the pumpkin spice ingredients together in a bowl and set aside.
- Put the butter and both sugars into a large mixing bowl and beat together with an electric hand mixer until light and fluffy (about 3-4 minutes). Add the flour, eggs, 2 tbsp of the pumpkin spice mix and vanilla extract, then mix again until smooth and fully incorporated.
- Divide the mixture between 12 cupcake cases and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the cakes have risen and golden. It should spring back when gently pressed. Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool.
- Meanwhile, make the icing. Put the egg white, sugar, and cream of tartar in a large bowl. Set over a bowl of barely simmering water (don’t let the bowl touch the water). Using an electric hand mixer, whisk until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is thick and glossy. Take off the heat and keep mixing for 5-6 minutes until the outside of the bowl is no longer warm to the touch and the mixture holds stiff peaks. Add the vanilla and briefly whisk again.
- To decorate the ghost cupcakes, put the icing to a piping bag. Snip a 3cm hole in the end and pipe a large blob onto 6 of the cupcakes so they sit tall. Decorate with chocolate chips for the ghost eyes and mouth.
- For the mummies, divide the white fondant into two and colour each half with gel food colouring as you like (or leave white). Dust the worksurface with some icing sugar, then roll out the fondant to about 2mm thick. Cut into ribbons, varying the width, then arrange across the top of the remaining cupcakes, overlapping as you go to create a bandage effect. Decorate with the sugar eyes and serve.
Any leftover pumpkin spice mix will keep for several months in an airtight container or jar. Add to other baking recipes or whisk into hot milk and add a shot of coffee for spiced pumpkin latte.
Make the cupcakes in advance. They’ll keep in an airtight container for 2-3 days. To keep for longer, cool completely then wrap well and freeze for up to 3 months (un-decorated).
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