Birthday Vanilla Cupcakes

Classic Baking

Birthday baking is an absolute favourite in our household. This one had a slight melancholic tinge since we were baking over 200 cupcakes to handout at mosque (as fatiah) on what would have been our dad’s 72nd birthday mere two weeks after his death, but of course there is no better way to celebrate his birthday!

The recipe is one I got from one of my favourite baking-buddies (and people in general) – My cousin, Asmina. It is a simple vanilla sponge cupcake recipe.


– 4 oz (rougly 114 grams) Caster Sugar

– 4 oz Margarine (I used butter – either works)

– 2 eggs

– 1tsp Vanilla extract

– 4 oz self-raising flour

– 1tsp baking powder (optional)


– First use a cake mixer to whisk the butter and sugar together

– next beat in the eggs, vanilla extract and baking powder


– Finally sieve and stir in the flour


– Now that the batter is prepared, spoon it into lined cupcake over trays. This recipe should make about 12 cupcakes.


– Bake in a preheated over at 180 degrees celcius for between 10-15 minutes, until light brown on the outside. Check that they are ready by sticking a toothpick in the centre of a cupcake. If it comes out clean its ready, if not, they need more time.


– Allow to cool on a cooling rack for an hour or so.



The Decorating!
There are so many options for the type of icing to use. I tend not to like sugar paste so we opted for a combination of buttercream, shop bought cupcake icing and cake covering chocolate.

To make the buttercream icing:  (Again Asmina Kassam’s recipe)

– 1/2 cup butter

– 1/2 cup margarine

– 4 cups icing sugar

– (if too thick add a few tablespoons of milk)

– 1 tsp vanilla extract or some coco powder or dessicated coconut and/or some food colouring.

Use a cake mixer to whisk the butter and sugar first, before adding the flavouring and/or food colouring. Then use a piping bag to cover the cupcakes.

The Shop Bought Stuff:


Cake covering chocolate:

We used waitrose own cake covering white chocolate and Morrison’s own cake covering milk chocolate.

Of course you also need an assortment of sprinkles, smarties, white chocolate starts, chocolate swirls, etc and then remember that nobody will pull out a magnifying glass to inspect them so they don’t have to be perfect!

These are how ours turned out:

13 1211 10

Cake covering chocolate

Cake covering chocolate

Shop bought icing

Shop bought icing

Home made butter cream

Home made butter cream

With love and in memory of a much loved man (23rd May 1941 – 8th May 2013),


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