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'It's a Girl!' Cupcakes (Chocolate Cupcakes with Aniseed Sprinkles)

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'It's a Girl!' Cupcakes (Chocolate Cupcakes with Aniseed Sprinkles)

"It's a Girl!" Cupcakes

Photo © Karin Engelbrecht
We've never liked beschuit met muisjes, those rusk-like rounds topped with sugar-covered aniseed (known as muisjes) that are served to celebrate births in the Netherlands, and these chocolate-aniseed flavored cupcakes are certainly a yummy alternative. They were inspired by Van Velze's delicious chocolade discs covered with muisjes. You can find aniseed sprinkles at every Dutch supermarket, but they are also widely available from websites that sell Dutch groceries online. Use pink and white muisjes, as we have, to celebrate the birth of a baby girl, or blue and white ones for a baby boy.

Yield: Makes 12 cupcakes.

Ingredients:

  • FOR THE CUPCAKES:
  • 1 1/3 cup self-rising flour (160 g)
  • 2 tbsp Dutch process cocoa (15 g)
  • 3/4 cup superfine (castor) sugar (150 g)
  • 2/3 cup butter, softened (150 g)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • FOR THE FROSTING:
  • 6.17 oz (about 1 1/3 cup) powdered (icing) sugar (175 g)
  • 2 tbsp Dutch process cocoa
  • 4.4 oz (about 1 cup ) cream cheese (125 g)
  • TO DECORATE:
  • Muisjes

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 356 degrees F (180 degrees C). Line a 12 cup muffin tray with paper baking cups. Add all the ingredients to a large mixing bowl and beat with an electric whisk for 1-2 minutes until light and creamy. Divide the mixture evenly between the cupcake cases.

Bake the cakes for 18-20 minutes until risen and just firm to the touch. Transfer to a fine wire rack to cool.

Meanwhile, add the powdered (icing) sugar, cocoa powder and cream cheese to a bowl and beat until completely smooth and creamy. Cover and set aside.

When the cupcakes are stone cold, use the back of a spoon to cover them with a layer of frosting. Decorate with the muisjes and store in an air-tight container until ready to serve.

Tips:

  • You can make the cupcakes a day in advance if stored in an air-tight container. Make the frosting and decorate on the day you plan to serve the cupcakes. They'll keep for a few more days if kept in a cool place.
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