Saturday, 29 October 2011

Halloween Special I: Creepy Crawly Custard Cream Cupcakes

This weekend, to celebrate Halloween are you:

a) Finding a freakily frightening fancy dress costume to act out your inner Wicked Witch of the West or ghoulish Ghostbuster?

b) Getting creative in the kitchen and carving up your pumpkin to ward off the evil spirits?

c) Scaring yourself silly working your way through the top 10 Best Ever Horror Films?

d) Embracing the Afterlife with a trip to these deadly Dungeons?

d) Drinking to All Hallows Eve with a Halloween Cocktail?

e) Making the most of our macabre past with a haunted ghost tour

f) Trick or treating your neighbours, hoping for at least a sweet or two, rather than an unanswered door with the distinct sound of the X Factor credits rolling from inside a darkened house (while reassuring yourself that No.23 are really very nice people and surely they can't be ignoring you...)?


g) none of the above?

If you're answering, firmly, e) then may I say hello from one scaredy-cat wimp to another. 

Rather than embracing all things horror and Halloween, this scaredy-cat wimp will be eating these, staying in doors and thinking of happy, cheery things such as...cakes.

Creepy Crawlie Custard Cream Cupcakes

(Dan Lepard, The Guardian Magazine, June 2011)


175g caster sugar
50ml oil
50g unsalted butter, softened
3 medium eggs, beaten lightly
2 tsp orange extract
100ml double cream
250g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
For the icing
225g icing sugar
Finely grated zest and juice of 1 orange
For the custard cream
2 egg yolks
200ml double cream
3 tsp cornflour
2 tsp vanilla extract
25g caster sugar
1) Line the pockets of a muffin/cupcake tray with cases and heat the oven to 160C/140c fan-assisted/320F/gas mark 2½. 
2) Beat together the sugar, oil and butter until light in colour, then add the eggs, beating one at a time until smooth. 
3) Pop in the orange extract and cream, beat well again, then add the flour and baking powder, and beat a further time until smooth. 
4)Fill each muffin case about two-thirds full with the mix and bake for 20-25 minutes, until the cupcakes are neatly domed and golden. Leave to cool.
5) For the custard cream, pop all the ingredients in a saucepan and beat together. Bring to a boil on a gentle heat, whisking often. Once bought to the boil remove from the heat and beat again until smooth. Cover and leave until cold.
6)Pipe the custard with a plain 8mm nozzle deep through the top crust and into the cupcake. Or, if you haven't piping bags scoop out a little of the cake with a small knife, spoon in a little custard and replace with the top you've scooped out.
7) Finally, beat the icing sugar, zest and enough juice (I used almost all the juice from the orange) to make a thick icing and drizzle over the top of the cupcakes, thereby covering your tracks. 
8) Decorate with suitable scary Halloween inspired decorations!

Baker's Notes...

  • These can be stored in an airtight container but are best eaten within 24 hours of baking
  • These have a great orangey tang- I've upped the orange extract volume from the original recipe
  • The 'Happy Halloween' is from Jane Asher's Sugarcraft Shop and the scary spider from a joke shop


  1. Fantastic Kate! Anything with custard in it gets my vote:-) x

  2. I love custard too......and these look divine! VERY spooky.....have a happy Halloween.....oooh!

  3. Lovely sounding cupcakes. I've not yet gone down the scooping some cake out and filling with something yummy, but these might be the ones that get me doing it.

    I'm whimping out and will be staying indoors with the curtains closes and door firmly shut.

  4. I made these a while back, but used lemon curd rather than make the cream filling. It was a lovely cupcake recipe, and yours look fab!

    I'm not going anywhere this Hallowe'en - definitely a stay-inside type. I'm quite scared by your spider - I think it's the long legs....


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