Lemon Meringue Cupcakes. I hate you!!

Just a short one tonight to tell you that I have been traumatised by some lemon meringue cupcakes. It was a while ago now but I’m still not over it.

It was all going so well, I was following a recipe, (which is where it all went wrong I think!!), and I made the batter, hid little spoonfuls of lemon curd in the middle and put it in the oven and made the most perfect, beautiful meringue, my first ever attempt was wonderful.

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Baked the cupcakes for the requisite amount of time, then piped the meringue on, (that bit needs a lot of practise!), popped them back in and the meringue went a perfect light brown and the timer went off.

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They looked a little pale underneath but I thought that might be how they were supposed to be. Until we tested one. (The baker’s prerogative!) It was raw in the middle. Really sloppy raw! It was so gross! So they went back into the oven with tinfoil over to protect that perfect perfect meringue at a slightly higher temperature. To cut a long story short, I was up until midnight, they were overdone and I vowed never ever to follow a recipe so blindly again! I will be trying them again. Just doing it my way!!

I’d love any tips or fail safe recipes for these please. I will not be defeated by a cake!!! 😀

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(I made the photo before I cut it open. Grrrrr!)

I was baking for The Children’s Society’s Bake and Brew and didn’t feel I could charge for them so gave them away. If you feel sorry for me and would like to make me feel better, or you just want to donate to such a wonderful charity, I have a just giving page! It’s right here!!

I have also had some lovely people give me the money at the school gates etc and I’ll be adding that on soon too.

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Baking and Brewing Up for The Children’s Society

There is something very apt about sitting and typing this post in front of the Great British Bake Off!! Anyone else watch it? Made me blub! What a great final!!

I am quite a lot excited about being involved in this cause, I am raising money for The Children’s Society by doing something I LOVE, (baking cakes), with the ultimate pay off that I feel obliged to sell them, (apart, of course, from the quality control tester, test two, ok fine, test batch! 😉 ), to raise money for a brilliant cause.

I mean, I do moan about my children occasionally, ok frequently, fine, most days ok!!!! But I do love them to bits, and I genuinely believe that all children deserve to be safe, and warm, fed and loved, and if I can do a teeny weeny bit to help, that makes me happy.

The very name of this campaign is great isn’t it, the Bake and Brew. Basically, for 5 years, since I had my daughter, well, before I had my daughter really, I was a ‘I have a big mummy tummy, let’s eat all things yummy’ sort of pregnant lady, I really did feel I had a license to inhale cake, and then when she actually arrived, well, it was very hard to leave the sofa for quite a while with the whole ‘boobs out for months’ thing and pringles and cake were so handy, especially as my lovely friends kept bringing it to my side!

Then there were ‘The small baby years’ when it was pretty easy to go to a cafe and actually finish a drink, more boobs out, more cake in as you need to keep adequately fueled, and fast forward five years, now with two lovely children, it is more of a survival method and means of staying awake past 4pm! The boobs are finally away though! 😉

I also mainline tea from the moment I stumble into the kettle in the morning and so this challenge seemed made for me!!

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I completed my first bake last night, and my lovely friend who runs the wonderful Miniature Music, a music group for toddlers that we attend every week, is always one for supporting good causes and let me offer the cakes there!

I’m also thinking of tempting my school run mum friends somehow and taking orders. I also sold my children the cakes for their pudding tonight. They were more then happy to dip into their piggy banks for a good cause. And a vanilla and chocolate chip cupcake with nutella and chocolate chip icing of course!

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I am going to share my recipes with you as I go, but I need to make you aware that I am not brilliant at measuring and so I will liberally use terms such as ‘splash, few, glug’ and so if you are a someone who needs very precise directions, I may make you shudder! It has always mystified my lovely mum that she follows directions with cooking and planting seeds and I have always been more of a type to throw handfuls of seeds down at the wrong time of year or lob in a few extra ingredients when baking and they always seem to turn out ok!

The cakes

I used my fail safe 4,4,4,2 recipe which makes 12 fairy cakes, but as I wanted a little extra, so I did 6oz butter and 6 oz caster sugar creamed, add in 6oz of self raising flour and 3 eggs. I then added a ‘large splash of vanilla essence’ if pushed I’d guess a 2 teaspoons! Mix until pale & fluffy & then fold in about 3/4s of a bag of chocolate chips.

Put equal amounts in paper cases in a muffin tray & bake in a preheated oven. I do 170 degrees, (fan), for 15 minutes.

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Once cooled, put spoonfuls of Nutella on as icing and sprinkles of chocolate chips on.

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Done! Now consume!! With

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So far, that is all I’m coming up with so I would really love to hear your suggestions.

You can tweet me @pinkpearbear, find me on facebook, or comment on here!

I’d also be very grateful if you would tell your friends, more heads make great ideas….or something like that!