Without a doubt, St Patrick's is the biggest social event of the Irish year. Everyone looks forward to the bank holiday, whether it's because it means a work free day (yay!) or plans for heading into town with friends and having a good time, starting on the eve of and then throughout Paddy's day.
Apart from the influx of tourists, and it wouldn't surprise me if the total amount of tourists totalled more on St Patrick's day than it does for the whole of Summer, it's pretty cool being in Dublin for Paddy's day.
Huge ferris wheels and other funfair rides are assembled on cordoned off streets. Cheesy green and clover laden hats, t-shirts, sunglasses and other "festive" knick knacks appear for sale in most large stores, even those outside of the tourist zone. Hubby makes me jealous when he tells me he's having one of my favourite giant hotdogs from the street vendors that pop up for festivals. It's just a great time in Dublin.
I also think it also helps usher in Summer. Days are getting longer, the daffodils are blooming, and no matter what the weather on either side, it always seems to be dry, and sometimes even sunny on Paddy's day. God loves the Irish and wants us to enjoy the day!
With this year's St Patrick's day falling on the weekend, we have the added bonus of getting the Monday as a bank holiday instead. So to celebrate the Irish and my adopted country, I thought some cupcakes were in order.
Now, I know that cupcakes are no longer the trendy food to make. The foodie world's moved on to cake pops or quinoa or hay or something green and exotic by now, but I still love cupcakes.
They're easy to make, are perfect for sharing with friends (or very eager co-workers!) and lend themselves perfectly to being adapted to suit whatever theme you're going for. In this case, something suitably Irish.
Coffee. Cream. Jameson. Thank you for adding booze to coffee! Just what we need with our caffeine kick, a healthy dose of alcohol to further warm our toes while we pretend it's warm enough for open toed shoes. Not quite as potent in cupcake form, but who cares. It's a cupcake. With coffee. Cream. And Jameson!
Happy St Patrick's Day! (And happy birthday Ant!!)
Have fun and eat your cupcakes responsibly :)
Makes 12 cupcakes
3/4 cup Self Raising Flour
1/2 cup Plain Flour
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 cup Milk
3 Tbsp Instant Espresso Powder
1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
115g Unsalted Butter
1 cup Golden Granulated Sugar
2 Large Eggs, lightly beaten
- Line a cupcake tin with cupcake papers
- Pre heat oven to 180°C (160°C fan assisted) / 350°F
- Sift flours and salt together
- In a jug or small bowl, dissolve espresso powder in milk and stir in vanilla
- With an electric beater or stand mixer with paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar together in a large bowl until pale and well creamed, about 3 - 5 mins
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating thoroughly and scraping the sides of the bowl down before adding the second egg
- Mix in a third of the dry ingredients
- Mix in half of the wet ingredients, scraping down the sides of the bowl
- Mix in half of remaining dry ingredients until just combined
- Beat in remaining wet ingredients
- Fold in the last of the dry ingredients until just mixed
- Divide batter amongst cupcake liners, filling them about 2/3 full
- Bake until a toothpick inserted comes out clean, or the top of the cupcake springs back when lightly pressed, between 18-20 mins
- Remove from oven and leave to cool in pan for about 10 mins
- Remove cupcakes from pan and leave cupcakes to cool on a wire rack completely before frosting
- Frost with a swirl of Jameson whipped cream
Jameson Whipped Cream Frosting
Enough to frost 12 cupcakes with a medium swirl
450ml Double Cream
1/4 cup Powdered Sugar
4 Tbsp Jameson Irish Whiskey (or your favourite whiskey!)
- Combine all ingredients in a large bowl
- Whisk just until stiff peaks form and can hold their shape
- Tip: Because double cream has a higher fat content, it whips up quicker than single/whipping cream, so be careful not to overbeat as you'll end up with some rather tasty butter. The cream will be completely liquid for quite a while, but literally go from medium peak to stiff peak in the space of a few seconds. You can also use single/whipping cream, just beat for a little longer
If you have a particularly strong instant espresso powder or granules, reduce the amount to 2 Tbsp (unless you like your coffee strong!)
You can also use normal instant coffee powder, increase the amount used to between 4-5 Tbsp
Also, make sure you use a good quality instant coffee. A cheaper brand won't have a lovely rich and deep flavour, and your food is only as good as the quality of ingredients you use
You could also try using brewed espresso coffee in place of the milk, but because I didn't test it out, I'm not sure if it will have an effect on the chemistry of the batter
I used double cream for the frosting as that's what's used for a real Irish coffee, but you can also use single/whipping cream
The icing sugar stabilises the whipped cream as well as adds a bit of sweetness, you can increase the amount of icing sugar if you'd like it a bit sweeter
Also, the Jameson can be increased if you want more of a kick ;)