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Posted by Maxine Cleminson - - 0 comments

You can't quite beat a gin & tonic, over ice with a slice.... or at least that's what I thought! So when browsing through a book by English chef & writer Annie Bell called 'Gorgeous Cakes', I was delighted to discover a recipe called Gin & Tonic Minis. After my recent success with Nigella Lawson's Chocolate Guiness cake at the twins' birthday party (I should point out that this was for the grown ups ... the kids had alcohol-free cake pops!!), this set me off on a daydream about a whole range of cocktail cakes! I envisioned Malibu & pineapple muffins, Rum & coke cupcakes, Vodka & tonic cheesecake.... mmmmm! So after a quick perusal through my stash of booze (Him Indoors & I are not big drinkers of spirits so most of what we have has been donated by expat friends departing the country!), I came up with a bottle of Tequila and Margarita mixer!

I had seen several recipes online for Margarita cake in the past, but every single one included a box of cake mix! I'm a bit of a purist when it comes to my cakes... not that I don't have the odd Betty Crocker packet stashed in my pantry ... I just prefer to make my cakes from scratch! So I set to work to create my own recipe based on a light and fluffy Angel Food cake (not to be confused with the pink, yellow & white layered Angel Cake of the UK).

You will need...

  • A mini-muffin or small cupcake pan (this recipe yields about 24 mini cupcakes).
  • Paper or silicone cupcake cases to fit your pan.
  • 2 medium egg whites.
  • Pinch of salt.
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar.
  • 60g (1/2 cup) of powdered icing sugar, sifted.
  • 35g (1/4 cup) of all-purpose plain white flour, sifted.
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons of your preferred Margarita Mix.
For the topping you will need...

  • 115g (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature.
  • Approx. 225g (2 cups) powdered icing sugar.
  • Juice of half a small lime, freshly squeezed.
  • 2 teapoons Tequila (optional.. add juice of other half of lime instead if you prefer non-alcoholic)
  • Zest of small lime.
  • Tiny pinch of salt.
  • Tiny drop of green food coloring, paste or liquid.
  • Small slices of lime for garnish (or you could use candied limes).
  • A piping bag (optional).

Some alternative cocktail cake suggestions:
  1. Rum & Coke cupcakes
  2. - Replace the Margarita mix with Coca-cola in the cake mix, and the Tequila with Rum in the frosting.  Omit the lime juice and green food coloring, and decorate with Gummy Cola Bottles!
  1. Malibu & Pineapple cupcakes
  2. - Replace the Margarita mix with pineapple juice in the cake mix, and the Tequila with Malibu.  Replace the lime with pineapple juice in the frosting and tint to a pale orange color instead of green.  You could decorate with candied pineapple.
  1. Gin & Tonic cupcakes
  2. - Replace the Margarita mix with tonic water in the cake mix, and the Tequila with Gin in the frosting.  Replace the Lime juice with Lemon juice and decorate with a slice of lemon instead.

Preheat the oven to 340'F (170'C or adjust if you have a fan oven).  Carefully seperate the egg whites into a large bowl taking great care not to break the yolks.  Using a handheld electric mixer, whisk the egg whites with the salt & cream of tartar until they are fluffy (you're aiming for soft peaks rather than stiff!).  Next, whisk in the sugar a tablespoon at a time (whisk for about 20 seconds after each addition).

You will then need to add the flour (one third at a time) and very gently fold in with a spoon, being careful not to knock out the air that you have added by whisking... remember ... light & fluffy!!!  Finally, gently fold in the Margarita Mix.

Arrange the paper cupcake cases in the mini-muffin pan and then fill each one with the cake mix.  It won't rise much as it already has the air added in the meringue-like texture so you can fill each one almost to the top.  Bake the cakes for 10-15 minutes until lightly golden on the surface and springy to touch.  Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the pan.

To prepare the frosting, you will need to use the electric mixer again so quickly wash the beaters.  Then in a large bowl, beat the butter until soft and creamy.  Add the powdered sugar a 1/4 of a cup at a time and beat in well.  Don't worry if it looks too dry at this stage.  Add the pinch of salt, zest and juice of the lime and the Tequila if you are making the boozy version!  Beat until a smooth buttercream texture.  Then add a tiny bit of the green food coloring and beat in until you achieve a pale green Margarita color.  You can top the cakes using a palette knife or a piping bag.  A small slice of lime to garnish finishes the cupcakes off nicely!

And sit back and enjoy with an ice cold Margarita!!  Delicious!

Tempt my Tummy Tuesdays

Strictly Homemade Tuesday

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Mama Max

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