Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Halo Effect Cupcakes - Inspired by MissusT fanfic

I have a dirrrty little secret that I'm about to share. I read fanfiction.

Ok, I don't just read Fanfic its a mild addiction. Not just any fanfic mind you it has be to be good, based on the Sookie Stackhouse novels and include Sookie and Eric.

What, you've never heard of Fanfic or Sookie Stackhouse. Well before Christmas neither had I and then my life was turned about. I watched TrueBlood, a HBO series based on 'The Southern Vampire Mysteries" and I loved it. I loved the show, I loved the books, I loved the characters (well maybe not Bill).

Then I found a link to Fanfiction and my life was changed. Instead of waiting a year for a new book to be released there were hundreds of stories that fans who are also really talented authors have written based on the characters in these books. It's free, it's sometimes a bit raunchy and I really enjoy it.

And just before I lose some of you I'll just say 'Twilight". That's right Bella and Edward updated on a regular basis and with story lines you could never imagine. Fanfic actually has stacks of different categories so your fav TV show no doubt has a stack of stories just waiting for you to read.

The very talented MissusT has written a fanfic called Halo Effect which features a food blogger as the main character. Which is something I have been thinking about doing for a number of years.

I thought it was inspiring how the writers on fanfic spend their time writing for the enjoyment of others for little more than the joy of knowing that other people have read and enjoyed their work enough to provide reviews. So this idea, along with a couple of other things that clicked together is the reason I am here typing my own blog.

Here is the link to MissusT's Halo effect, which will link you thru to the world of Fanfic. But I'm warning you it can be highly addictive.

Lemon Chiffon Halo Effect Cupcake
Moist lemon chiffon cupcake topped by a fluffy meringue, a sugary halo finished with a rich surprise filling

Lemon Chiffon cake
1 1/2 cups cake flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup macadamia oil (use canola if macadamia not available)
4 large eggs, separated
1 1/2 tsp grated lemon zest
1/4 cup less 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup water
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp cream of tartar

Preheat oven to 160 C (325 F).

Sift cake flour, 3/4 cup sugar, baking powder and salt into large bowl. Make a well in the center and add oil, egg yolks, zest, juice, water and vanilla. Mix on medium speed about 3 mins or until mixture is smooth and thick. Scrape down sides as required.

In another large bowl with clean beaters mix egg whites and cream of tartar until whites are foamy and tartar dissolves, continue beating on high speed until the egg whites look shiny and smooth to approx soft peak stage. Slowly beat in the remaining 1/4 cup sugar, 1 tbsp at a time until sugar is dissolved.

Stir around 1/3 of the egg white mixture into the yolk batter and then add the remaining egg white mixture carefully folding until no white streaks remain.

Transfer into a muffin tin with no liners, filling each hole to the top and bake 35 mins until the tops are golden and a tester inserted comes out dry.

Allow to cool completely and remove by using a small knife to loosen the edges and then using your fingers to gently rock them back and forth to release as required.

Seven minute frosting

1 1/4 cups sugar
1/3 cup water
3 large egg whites
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1tsp vanilla extract

Bring the bottom of a double boiler to simmer.
Put sugar, water, egg whites and cream of tartar in the top of a double boiler and beat with a mixer on high speed until white and foamy approx 1 min. Put double boiler on top of the simmering water and beat egg mixture at high speed for 7 minutes. Remove from heat and mix in vanilla immediately.

Frosting must be used straight away.

Optional Chocolate filling

I used left over chocolate filling from my walnut cookies click here for recipe

Sugar Halo's
227 gram (1/2 pound) granulated sugar
116 ml (4 liquid oz) water
43gram (1 1/2 oz) glucose

Bring sugar and water to boil, add glucose and cook to a light caramel. Quickly plunge bottom of pan in cold water to stop cooking process. Spray metal cookie sheets lightly with oil.

Using a spoon, make halo shapes onto the metal cookie sheets.

Allow to cool, remove from sheets carefully just prior to using.

Place a small ball of chocolate filling into center of cupcake. Top with seven minute frosting, using a knife to make swirly peaks. Place halo on top of cupcake just before serving.

Verdict - this cake was really yummy,  there was a little to much frosting for my tastes, which is easily fixed. But the fluffy frosting worked well with the lemon cake. For an easier and just as delicious version leave out the choc filling and the halo's.

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