Spider Monster Cupcakes by Dom at Belleau Kitchen
Anyone who knows me will know that I am not a fancy cake-baking or cake decorating kind of guy. Whilst I'm happy to bung a few ingredients into a bowl and whizz it into a cake, that's about as far as I'll go. I just don't have the will-power, stamina, steady hand or quite frankly the patience to produce those amazingly intricate designs you see on social media.
To keep it simple and 'user-friendly' (read - good for any lazy, shaky-handed fool) I'm using decorating items readily available at your local corner shop or supermarket. There's also no icing bags or fancy footwork, it's all very much the most basic of cupcake decorating but I think delivers in spades.
I love how each cupcake seems to have it's own individual character and personality. Some seem cute and friendly, others you wouldn't want to meet in a dark corner, late at night. It's amazing how the slight of hand when placing eyeballs can make such a difference. There is a LOT of fun to be had here!
I'm using a classic cupcake recipe because quite frankly it's the best one I've used and you can't improve on such greatness. I'm also doing the 'all-in-one' method as it's just so simple and anyone can do it.
for the vanilla cupcakes (makes 12 cupcakes)
for the chocolate icing
for decorating (all items available from your local supermarket)
Pre-heat the oven to 170C
You will need a 12 hole deep cupcake tray plus 12 cupcake cases, a large bowl and an electric hand whisk. You could do this in a stand mixer with the whisk attachment or simply a wooden spoon. Whichever method you go for, ensure your butter is super-soft.
Start with the cupcake batter. Place all the ingredients into a large bowl and whisk until you have a smooth batter. Sometimes adding a splash or two of milk can help loosen the batter. You want it to drop easily off the spoon.
Divide the batter up into the cupcake cases. It should be roughly a tablespoon and a half in each case.
Bake for 20 mins or until the cupcake are risen and golden and a skewer inserted comes out clean. Leave to cool on a wire rack.
To make the icing, place the butter and half the icing sugar into a large bowl and bring together with a wooden spoon, add a splash of milk and the vanilla, then use an electric hand whisk to bring it together. Add the rest of sugar and the cocoa powder and whisk until it's smooth.
To build the spider monsters, start by smothering the cupcake tops in icing. I use a butter knife and am quite generous. You don't have to be neat here as they're about to be covered in sprinkles.
Place the sprinkles into a bowl, then dunk the iced cupcakes into the sprinkles and rotate them in the bowl so that the tops are completely covered.
Use the matchmakers for legs and the liquorice tubes sliced into eyeballs. I also used other bits of the Allsorts to make teeth and goofy eyes. Have fun with it and don't forget, there are no rules. Monsters can be as ugly, freakish or bonkers as you want them to be!