Vanilla Cupcakes with Jam & White Chocolate Buttercream
Recipe type: Cakes
Serves: 12 small cupcakes
For the cupcakes:
  • 125g (4.4 oz) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1/2 cup caster sugar (superfine)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup standard flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup milk
For the raspberry jam:
  • 50g (1.75 oz) raspberries
  • 25g (0.88 oz) caster sugar (super fine)
For the buttercream:
  • 200g (7 oz) white chocolate, chopped
  • 250g (8.8 oz) unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • 250g (8.8 oz) icing sugar (confectioner's sugar)
  • Pinch of salt
For the cupcakes:
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C (360°F)*. Line a 12 hole muffin tin with paper cases. Cream butter on its own initially, until smooth, then add the vanilla essence and sugar (gradually) and beat until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.**
  2. Sift flour, baking powder and salt together. Fold a third of the flour mix into the creamed mixture, followed by half of the milk. Fold the second third of flour in, then the remaining milk. Finish with the last third of flour.
  3. Spoon mixture evenly into the prepared tin. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until cakes spring back when lightly touched. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
For the raspberry jam:
  1. Into a small saucepan, add the raspberries with the caster sugar. Over a moderately low heat, cook the raspberries down (mash them with a fork or potato masher to break them down more quickly) until the sauce starts to become syrupy - this will take a few minutes. Take off the heat and strain through a sieve into a small jug or bowl to remove the seeds. Store in the fridge to firm up. If you find the jam is too runny, you can add a little store-bought jam into the mixture to stiffen it up.
For the buttercream:
  1. Add the chopped white chocolate to a heat-proof bowl, and place on top of a saucepan of gently simmering water (making sure the bowl doesn't touch the water). Stir it gently to melt and once the chocolate is nearly all melted, take the bowl off the heat and continue to stir until the chocolate is smooth. Let it cool.
  2. Add the soft butter to an electric mixer with paddle attachment. Sift the icing sugar and pinch of salt over top and beat together on average speed until pale and fluffy.
  3. Pour the cooled chocolate over top and beat on low speed until well combined and silky smooth. If the mixture is too wet for piping, add more icing sugar and beat to combine. If it is too dry, add a little milk and beat to combine. If making ahead, store in fridge, but bring back to room temperature before piping.
To assemble:
  1. Using a sharp paring knife, cut out a cone-shaped hole into the top of each cooled cupcake. Dollop a teaspoon of jam into each hole. Transfer the buttercream into a piping bag with a nozzle of your choice, and pipe onto cupcake. Decorate further if you wish and serve.
*I cooked the cupcakes at 160C (320F) for about 25 minutes.
**It's common for the mixture to curdle after beating in the eggs (due to differing temperatures). If you find this is the case, and extra beating doesn't solve the issue, don't worry about it - the mixture will still cook perfectly.
Recipe by The Kiwi Cook at