Butterfly Cupcakes

Makes 10

200g unrefined caster sugar
200g dairy-free margarine
4 eggs
100g gluten-free plain flour
100g gluten-free oat flour
1 teaspoon gluten-free baking powder
vanilla extract

For the buttercream
100g dairy-free margarine
400g icing sugar (depending on brand of dairy-free margarine)
A few drops vanilla extract or other flavouring

Fill a muffin tray with 10 muffin cases.

Preheat oven to 190°c/170°c fan oven / 375°f / gas mark 5

Weigh the gluten-free plain flour, gluten-free oat flour and baking powder into a large mixing bowl. Stir together then sift at least twice to fully distribute the baking powder. Alternatively blend together in a food processor.

Cream together the caster sugar and dairy-free margarine until light and fluffy. It is best to do this using a food mixer with a beater attachment or use a hand held electric mixer.

Crack the eggs into a bowl and beat lightly with a fork. Beat the egg into the creamed mixture a bit at a time making sure to beat in each addition properly before adding the next. The mixture will probably split but will come together when you add the flour.

Add the vanilla. If using a food mixture, mix in the flour on the lowest speed setting. If not then fold the flour in with a spoon.

Divide the mixture equally between the 10 cases and bake for 18 – 20 minutes until firm to touch and a knife inserted comes out clean. These will rise above the top of the case. Leave on a cooling wire until completely cold before finishing.

For the buttercream
Mix the icing sugar into the dairy-free margarine, a little at a time. Do not overbeat the mixture or it may split. Stir in a few drops of cooled boiled water until it reaches the required consistency. Add the vanilla to taste.

This is a lot of icing sugar. If you use less icing sugar to margarine, the mixture may split. Add a little extra flavouring to this buttercream. *see note.

Carve the tops off the sponge with a sharp knife and cut the top in half to make the wings. Spoon a tiny amount of jam into the centre of the cake. Pipe a swirl of buttercream on top. Stick the ‘wings’ into the buttercream and dredge the top with icing sugar.

In all recipes requiring self-raising gluten-free flour, I advise stirring the flours together with the gluten-free baking powder then sift at least twice to fully distribute the baking powder. Alternatively blend together in a food processor.

You can make your own gluten-free oat flour by blending gluten-free oats in a food processor until fine. This may not turn out as fine as shop bought but is not as expensive.

For dairy-free buttercream: Most dairy-free margarine is quite soft. You will need to add four times as much icing sugar to the dairy-free margarine or it will split. I like to use Naturli block margarine as it is a firmer margarine. You only need twice as much icing sugar to this block margarine. It is a lot tastier and doesn’t contain palm oil.