March 24, 2022

Recipe: Ruby grapefruit, pink peppercorn and thyme drizzle cakes

Aromatic pink peppercorns and fresh thyme pair perfectly with the tart sweetness of grapefruit to make these more grown-up cupcakes.

Ruby grapefruit, pink peppercorn and thyme drizzle cakes
makes 18 mini cakes

240g butter, softened
250g caster sugar
250g self-raising flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp thyme leaves, chopped
4 eggs
80ml milk

for candied grapefruit (optional)
rind from 1 ruby grapefruit
1 cup white sugar
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup caster sugar

for drizzle syrup
juice of 1 ruby grapefruit
3/4 cup caster sugar

for icing
2 cups icing sugar, sifted
1/3 cup ruby grapefruit juice
pink peppercorns
thyme leaves

If using, make the candied grapefruit the day before serving the cake. Peel the rind from the grapefruit and remove as much of the pith as possible. Slice the rind into thin strips. Place the sugar and water into a small saucepan, bring to the boil to dissolve the sugar. Add the rind and simmer for 5 minutes. Put aside to steep and cool to room temperature.  Strain, pat the rind dry with paper towel and toss through the caster sugar. Place on a wire rack in a single layer and allow to dry out overnight.

Preheat oven to 160C. Grease a 12-hole muffin or mini bar cake tin (or 20x30cm cake tin). Cream butter and sugar. Add flour, baking powder, thyme, eggs and milk and whisk well to combine. Pour into cake moulds (there will be enough to do a second half batch if making mini cakes) and bake for 12 minutes or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Allow to rest for 10 minutes before turning out on to a wire rack set over a baking tray. Meanwhile, mix together grapefruit juice and caster sugar. Slowly pour the mix over the warm cakes, allowing the cakes to absorb the syrup.

Once the cakes have cooled, mix together the icing ingredients. Spoon the icing over the cakes and garnish with candied grapefruit (if using), pink peppercorns and thyme leaves.

This recipe first appeared in the October 2021 issue of SALIFE magazine.

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