Recipes: Little delights

Courgette, Onion, Feta and California Walnut Cupcake

If you’re looking for creative inspiration for National Cupcake Week then this savoury take on cupcakes will definitely deliver the wow factor. This original recipe is great to impress friends and family. 

Preparation time: 45 mins

Serves: 12

You’ll need:

For the cupcakes:  

1 spring onion

1 small courgette

70g feta cheese

115ml olive oil

2 eggs

125g sugar

160ml skimmed milk

270g flour

2 tsp yeast

75g California walnut

Pinch of salt & pepper

For the topping:

200g light cream cheese

12 California walnut halves

A few stems of chives

12 cupcake cases

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 175°C.
  2. Peel the onion and finely chop, grate the courgette and cut the feta into 12 even cubes
  3. Heat two tablespoons of the oil in a small frying pan and cook the onion on a low heat for 5 minutes until softened. Add the grated courgette and cook for a further 2 minutes, then remove from the heat and leave aside to cool.
  4. Mix together the eggs, sugar and remaining olive oil until you have a smooth mixture.
  5. Add the milk to the mixture, then sift the flour and the yeast over a bowl. Beat for around 2 minutes until you have a light and creamy texture.
  6. Next, add the chopped California walnuts and the onion and courgette mix, then season with the salt and pepper and mix gently.
  7. Line a 12-hole muffin tray with cupcake cases and divide the cake mixture evenly, pushing a cube of feta into the centre of each.
  8. Bake for 18-20 minutes, until they have risen completely and feel firm to touch. Remove from the oven, leave to cool for a few minutes in the tray, and then place onto a cooling rack.
  9. When completely cool, using the back of a spoon or spatula cover the cupcake surfaces with the cream cheese. Finally, decorate each cupcake with a California walnut half and sprinkle with a pinch of the chopped chives to serve. 

 

White Chocolate and California Walnut Cupcakes

This brilliantly simple combination of sweet and nutty flavour is sure to be a firm family favourite – delightful desserts to relish!  

Preparation time: 65 mins

Serves: 12

You’ll need:

For the cupcakes:

25g California walnuts

25g white chocolate

100g butter, room temperature

275g flour

3 tsp baking powder

3 eggs

400g sugar

1 pinch of salt

1 sachet vanilla sugar

200ml buttermilk

For the topping:

3 tbsp. lemon juice

12 California walnut halves, for decorating

200g dark chocolate

150g whipping cream   

15g coconut oil

12 cupcake cases

Icing bag

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 175°C
  2. Finely chop the California walnuts and toast in a dry frying pan, until golden brown, stirring often to ensure they don’t catch. Remove from the pan and leave aside to cool. Next, melt the white chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water. Remove the bowl and leave aside to cool.  
  3. In a large bowl sift together the flour and baking powder and set aside. Next, separate the eggs and whisk the yolks, then fold in 150g of the sugar, the salt, vanilla sugar and buttermilk.
  4. Once combined, stir in the white chocolate and butter mixture, and the toasted California walnuts. Finally, carefully fold in the flour mix.
  5. Line a 12-hole muffin tray with cupcake cases and divide the cake mixture equally.
  6. Bake in preheated the oven for 20-25 minutes or until risen and golden, then leave to rest for around 5 minutes. Remove them carefully from the tray and leave aside to cool.
  7. In a large heatproof bowl, whisk the egg whites, remaining sugar and lemon juice with an electronic hand whisk over a saucepan of simmering water until the beaten egg whites are firm and glossy. Remove from the heat and whisk again for 5-10 minutes until the mixture is cool.
  8. Pour the frosting mixture into a piping bag with a large open nozzle and pipe icing on top of each cupcake. Let the cupcakes chill for 30 minutes so the frosting can set.
  9. Heat the whipping cream in a small saucepan along with the coconut oil until melted. Chop the dark chocolate, then add to the cream. Once this has melted leave aside to cool. Spread the chocolate cream mixture over the chilled cupcakes and place a California walnut half on each cupcake to serve.

 

 

Maple and California Walnut Cupcakes

Treat yourself this National Cupcake Week with these delectable maple and California walnut cupcakes – a perfect dessert time treat!

Preparation time: 35 mins (plus chilling time)

Serves: 8

You’ll need:

For the cupcakes

1 egg

100g sugar

90ml sunflower oil

160g flour

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp baking soda

A pinch of cinnamon

1 ½ tbsp. maple syrup

40g California walnuts, chopped

For the topping:

100g cream cheese

2 tsp. brown sugar

1 ½ tsp. maple syrup

15g butter

3 whole California walnuts, halved

8 cupcake cases

Piping bag

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 175°C
  2. Place the egg, sugar and oil into a large bowl and whisk together until they are fully combined.
  3. Sift the dry ingredients over the bowl, add the maple syrup and stir well together, then add the California walnuts.
  4. Line a muffin tray with the cupcake cases and distribute the cake mixture equally between them.
  5. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes, or until they are risen and golden brown, then aside to cool.
  6. To make the frosting, place the cream cheese, sugar and maple syrup into a large bowl and whisk until smooth.
  7. Once the cupcakes are completely cool, fit a piping bag with a large open nozzle and pipe circles of icings on top of each cupcake.
  8. Finally, in order to create the candied California walnut, place the butter in a small saucepan until it melts, along with the brown sugar and California walnut halves and mix together until caramelised. Place the candied California walnuts on each cupcake and serve.

Pumpkin and California Walnut Cupcake

Light and full of flavour, these punchy pumpkin and California walnut cupcakes will be a welcome addition to afternoon tea.

Preparation time: 2 ½ hours

Serves: 12

You’ll need:

For the base:

80g California walnuts

40g brown sugar

20g butter, melted

For the cupcakes:

200g nutmeg pumpkin, peeled and chopped

140ml orange juice

200g low-fat cream cheese

2 eggs

2 tbsp. sunflower oil

1 tsp cinnamon

Small pinch of ground nutmeg, cloves, allspice, and ginger 

80g sugar

1 packet of vanilla sugar

30g flour

40g breadcrumbs

½ tsp baking powder

For the topping:

75g California walnuts, chopped

Whipped cream

1 tsp cinnamon

12 cupcake cases

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 175°C
  2. Grate the pumpkin, then place into a medium saucepan along with the orange juice and cover leaving to simmer for 15 minutes.
  3. Next, place the contents of the saucepan into a blender and whizz to create a puree, then leave aside.  
  4. To make the base, toast the California walnuts in a dry pan over a low heat until golden brown, stirring frequently. Then crush the California walnuts into smaller pieces, place into a medium sized bowl and mix with the brown sugar and melted butter.
  5. Line a 12-hole muffin tray with the cupcake cases. Divide the base mixture between them and push down firmly.  
  6. Beat the cream cheese with the eggs, sunflower oil, spices, sugar, vanilla sugar and pumpkin puree until you get a smooth mixture.
  7. Add in the flour, breadcrumbs and baking powder and beat together.
  8. Divide the mixture between the cupcake cases. Bake in the oven for about 30-35 minutes or until risen, and a skewer comes out clean.
  9. Leave the cupcakes to cool, then place in the fridge for around 2 hours to set.  
  10. For the topping, add whipped cream to each cupcake, along with a pinch of cinnamon and a sprinkle of chopped California walnuts.

 

Sun dried Tomato, Rocket, Mozzarella, and Californian walnut Cupcakes

Why not try something different this National Cupcake week with these exceptionally original sun dried tomato, rocket, mozzarella and California walnut cupcakes. With their explosion of flavours, these babies really stand out from the cupcake crowd!

Preparation time: 50 mins

Serves: 12

You’ll need:

For the cupcakes:

1 ball of mozzarella

3 sun dried tomatoes

Small handful of rocket

2 eggs

125g sugar

115ml olive oil

160ml skimmed milk

270g wholemeal flour

2 tsp of yeast

75g of California walnuts

Pinch of salt & pepper

For the topping:

200g cream cheese

Pinch of salt and pepper

3 sun dried tomatoes

12 rocket leaves

30g California walnut, chopped

12 cupcake cases

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 175°C.  
  2. Drain the mozzarella cheese and finely chop, then chop the 3 sun dried tomatoes and the small handful of rocket.
  3. Whisk the eggs with the sugar and the olive oil in a large bowl until you have a smooth mixture. Add the milk, then sift together the flour and yeast over the bowl and whisk for 2 minutes, until you have a light, creamy texture.
  4. Add the California walnuts, mozzarella, sun dried tomatoes, chopped rocket, and salt and pepper and mix gently.
  5. Line a 12-hole muffin tray with cupcake cases and divide the mixture equally. Bake for 18-20 minutes, until risen and a skewer comes out clean. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
  6. For the topping, whisk the ricotta and a pinch of salt and pepper together, then finely chop the additional 3 sun-dried tomatoes.
  7. When completely cool, using the back of a spoon, cover the cupcake surfaces with ricotta. Finally, decorate with the finely chopped sun dried tomatoes and chopped California walnuts, and place a piece of rocket on each cupcake to serve.  

See more recipes at californiawalnuts.uk

 

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