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Kitchen Queries

Welcome to Kitchen Queries, where the nigella.com team will answer your cooking or food related questions.  We’d love you to submit some of your recipe problems, dilemmas or queries for us to get our teeth into!

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  • Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake as Cupcakes

    I have often made your Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake from Feast (p269) for family birthdays, and am wondering wether the recipe would translate to cupcakes? It's just such a wonderful rich moist mixture, and with that sour cream frosting, would make an amazing cupcake. Would it work to make a batch and then cook it in cupcake papers for a shorter amount of time? Thanks so much, Al.

    From the nigella team:

    Most layer cake recipes will convert to cupcakes and usually a 20cm/8-inch cake will make 20-24 cupcakes. Make the cake batter as described in the recipe then divide it between paper cupcake cases (liners) in a muffin tin (pan). Fill the paper cases just over half full but no more than 3/4 full, otherwise the cupcakes will just overflow. Bake at 180c/350F for 15-20 minutes, until the tops feel firm and a cake tester inserted into a cupcake in the centre of the pan comes out clean. Cool for a couple of minutes in the pan then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely

    The icing should be enough for topping the cupcakes as it makes enough to fill and completely cover the large cake.

    One slight difference you may notice when you switch from layer cakes to cupcakes is that the tops of the cupcakes will be slightly flat rather than domed. If you want to try and get a more domed top you can try baking the cupcakes at 200c/400F for 12-18 minutes, sometimes this can help by giving a more peaked top as the outside of the cupcake cooks lightly more quickly, pushing the inside up. However you need to watch the cakes carefully so that the bases don't get scorched.

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