The 14th of February was probably chosen as Valentine’s Day because it was the ancient belief that birds, particularly lovebirds, began to mate on that date. Make a batch of these delicious cupcakes for the one you love. Alternatively, impress your family and friends with them.
Ingredients (makes 6 cupcakes)
- 6 tbsp butter, softened, or soft margarine
- generous 3/8 cup superfine sugar
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 1/4 oz/35 g marzipan
- red food coloring (liquid or paste)
- confectioners sugar, for dusting
- 4 tbsp butter, softened
- 1 cup confectioners sugar
- 1 oz semisweet chocolate, melted
- 6 chocolate flower decorations
- To make the hearts, knead the marzipan until pliable, then add a few drops of red coloring and knead until evenly colored red. Roll out the marzipan to a thickness of 1/4 inch on a counter dusted with confectioners sugar. using a small heart-shaped cutter, cut out 6 hearts. Put these on a tray lined with waxed paper and dusted with confectioners sugar. Let dry for 3-4 hours.
- To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Put 6 paper muffin cases in a muffin pan.
- Put the butter, sugar, and vanilla extract in a bowl and beat together until light and fluffy. Gradually add the eggs, beating well after each addition. Sift in the flour, cocoa, and baking powder and, using a large spoon, fold into the mixture. Spoon the batter into the paper cases.
- Bake the cupcakes in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until well risen and firm to the touch. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool.
- To make the topping, put the butter in a large bowl and beat until fluffy. Sift in the confectioners sugar and beat together until smooth. Add the melted chocolate and beat together until well mixed. When the cakes are cold, spread the frosting on top each cake and decorate with a chocolate flower.