Prep Time 30min. Total Time 1hr. 25min. Servings 24 servings
Cue your favorite version of Pomp and Circumstance. Orange-flavored cupcakes topped with a chocolate-graham mortarboard earn you a degree in cuteness.
- 1 pkg. (2-layer size) yellow cake mix
- 1 env.KOOL-AID orange Flavor Unsweetened Drink Mix
- 2/3 cup (1/2 of 7-oz. tub) BAKER'S Dark Semi-Sweet Dipping Chocolate, melted
- 12 graham crackers, broken crosswise in half (24 squares)
- 2 cups thawed cool WHIP Whipped Topping
- 2 chewy fruit snack rolls, any color
- 24 jelly beans
- 300g butter, softened
- 300g golden caster sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 250g plain flour
- 100g ground almond
- 2½ tsp baking powder
- zest 1 orange, plus 2 tbsp juice
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 200g butter, softened
- 450g icing sugar, plus a little extra
- 200g cream cheese
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 1 tbsp orange juice
- food colouring paste of your choice (we used a mixture of pink and yellow to create coral)
- 250g pack green sugar paste (or fondant icing mixed with green food colouring)
- 24 muffin cases (we used green ones)
- large piping bag
- large curved star point piping nozzle
- 15cm/6in styrofoam ball
- 15cm/6in flowerpot (measured across the top)
- green tissue paper
- sticky tape
- 24 short wooden skewers (or long ones cut in half)
- ribbon, to decorate (optional)
- Heat oven to 170C/150C fan/gas 3½. Line 2 x 12-hole muffin tins with muffin cases. Put the butter and caster sugar in a large bowl and blend with an electric hand whisk until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, whisking well between each addition. Add the flour, almonds, baking powder and a pinch of salt. Mix again, then add the orange zest and juice, and almond extract. Give a final mix to combine everything.
- Use 2 dessertspoons to divide the mixture between the cases. Bake for 22-25 mins, changing the tins over after 15 mins. Remove from the oven, leave to cool for 10 mins in the tins, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Can now be frozen for up to 3 months.
- To make the icing, tip the butter into a large bowl and blend with an electric hand whisk until smooth. Add the icing sugar, cream cheese, almond extract and orange juice. Mash everything together first with a spatula (to avoid a mess), then go in with the electric whisk and mix until smooth. Add your food colouring and mix again until you have an even colour. (If you’re using liquid food colouring, it will make the icing runny, so add a little more icing sugar.)
- Fit the piping bag with a large curved star point piping nozzle, then fill the bag with half of the icing and twist the end closed. To pipe, hold the piping bag directly above the centre of the cake and, applying a steady pressure, pipe in a swirl, working out towards the edge of the cupcake. When you reach the edge, swipe the nozzle to create a smooth finish – you can always cover this bit with leaves, so don’t worry too much if it looks messy. When you have piped 12 cupcakes, empty any remaining icing from the bag back into the bowl with the reserved icing. Add a little more colouring to create a deeper shade (and a little extra sifted icing sugar if the icing gets too runny). Whisk again, then refill your piping bag and ice the remaining cakes. Can be stored somewhere cool for up to 1 day (the fridge is fine, just make sure that you remove 30 mins before eating).
- Before serving, add a few leaves, if you like: pinch off small pieces of green sugar paste or fondant icing and shape into leaves. Use a sharp knife to add detail, then stick onto the cupcakes. See tips, below left, for how to build your bouquet.
- 250g pack butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
- 175g golden caster sugar
- 5 eggs, beaten
- 250g self-raising flour, plus an extra 2 tbsp
- 1 tsp baking powder
- zest 1 orange, plus 2 tbsp of the juice
- 250g natural marzipan, coarsely grated (easiest if chilled beforehand)
- ½ tsp almond essence, optional
- 200g glacé cherry, halved
- about 100g/4oz icing sugar, sifted
- mini chocolate eggs, to decorate
- Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4 and place 24 cupcake cases into cupcake tins. Beat the butter and sugar together with electric beaters or a tabletop mixer until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, 250g flour, baking powder, orange zest and juice and beat well till thick, creamy and evenly mixed.
- Toss cherries in the extra 2 tbsp flour and fold into the batter along with grated marzipan and almond essence (if using). Spoon into the cupcake cases and bake for 20-25 mins, or until well risen and golden. Leave to cool in tin for 10 mins, then place on a cooling rack to cool completely.
- Mix the icing sugar with around 1 tbsp water to make a loose but not-too-runny icing. Ice the tops of the cupcakes and top each one with about 3 mini chocolate eggs.
- 140g self-raising flour
- 100g ground almond
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 175g caster sugar
- ½ tsp almond extract
- 3 large eggs
- 100g natural yogurt
- 175g melted butter
- 100g icing sugar, plus extra for dusting and sticking syrup
- 350g ready-roll icing
- 175g marzipan
- green, yellow and pink food colourings
- Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tin with cupcake or muffin cases. Mix the flour, almonds, baking powder and sugar together in a large bowl. Beat the almond extract and eggs into the yogurt, then tip this into the dry ingredients with the butter. Whisk together until lump-free, then divide between the cases. Bake for 18-22 mins until a skewer poked in comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. The cakes will freeze for up to 1 month.
- Roll out the marzipan on a surface dusted with a little icing sugar, to about the thickness of a £1 coin. Using a 6cm round biscuit cutter, stamp out 12 circles, re-rolling and stamping trimmings if necessary. Mix enough icing sugar into a cup of water to give a syrupy icing, then brush over backs of the marzipan circles and stick onto cakes.
- Knead a little yellow food colouring into one-quarter of the ready-roll icing, a little pink into another quarter and green into another quarter. Wrap up the green icing and set aside, then repeat step 2 using a 7cm cutter to stamp out 4 circles each from the pink, yellow and white icing, sticking again with syrup.
- Mix enough water into the 100g icing sugar to give a stiff-ish icing. Divide into three, leave one white, and colour the others pink and yellow – make these colours a little darker so the roses stand out. Transfer icing into small food bags, twist tops to seal and snip off just the tiniest tip of one corner on each bag. Pipe spirals on cakes, mixing up the colours. Pinch small bits of the green icing into leaves, marking the vein with a toothpick if you like. Add 1, 2 or 3 leaves to each spiral so it looks like a rose (you can use the syrupy icing to help them stick if you need). The cakes are best eaten within 2 days, and once decorated will keep for 1-2 days in airtight containers.