It sounds like a bit off an odd flavour combo at first but give it a try and you will LOVE it. Moist hazelnut sponge with a rosewater flavoured American buttercream and they’re also filled to the brim with Nutella. Hazelnut is very winter-y while the rose is quite floral and much more of a summer flavour, which makes these the perfect spring dessert – when you can’t quite let winter go but really you want sunshine and hanging out in the park with some cupcakes…
- 150g Soft, Unsalted Butter
- 100g Sugar
- 2 m Eggs
- 50ml Milk
- 100g Ground Hazelnuts
- 100g Plain Flour
- 2 tsp Baking Powder
- Pinch of Salt
- 80g Chopped Hazelnuts
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
150g Hazelnut Spread
- 280g Soft, Unsalted Butter
- 500g Icing Sugar
- 1/4-1/2 tsp Rose Flavour
- 1-2 Tbsp Milk
- Red / Pink Food Gel
Preheat the oven to 180 degree C (160 Fan). Line a 12 hole cupcake tin with cupcake liners. Make sure all your ingredients are room temperature.
In a large mixing bowl cream sugar and butter together for about 5 minutes until the mixture is really light and fluffy. Combine milk, eggs and vanilla extract and add the mixture in 2 stages, mixing well in between. Scrape the bowl down with a spatula and mix for another few seconds. Combine flour, hazelnut, baking powder and salt and add to the rest of the batter in two stages, again mixing well in between. Then add the chopped, roasted hazelnuts, mix them in well. Scrape the bowl down again and mix for another few seconds until the batter is well combined.
Using a large and a small spoon, scoop the batter into the cupcake liners (the batter will be enough for about 14 cupcakes so make sure to not overfill the liners, just bake the last two separately). Pick the batter up with the large spoon and use the back of the small spoon to push it into the cupcake case. Bake the cupcakes for about 18 minutes, then let them cool completely.
For the buttercream put the butter in a large mixing bowl. Whip the butter for about 7 minutes (more 10 minutes if you’re using a hand mixer) until it’s really light in colour and super fluffy. If you’re using a stand mixer use the paddle attachment, preferably a flexi paddle. Scrape the bowl down every now and then in between to make sure that you don’t have a layer of butter stuck to the bottom and sides to the bowl that doesn’t get whipped up.
Add half the icing sugar and sieve it into the bowl. Start the mixer very slowly and mix the first batch of sugar into the butter until it’s combined well. Repeat with the second batch of sugar. Scrape the bowl down again to make sure that all the icing sugar gets mixed in. Add a quarter teaspoon of rose flavour and mix it in well. Try and see if the flavour is strong enough, if not add another quarter teaspoon. The buttercream will be a bit too stiff to pipe so it needs a bit more liquid to loosen it up. Add half a tablespoon of milk, mix well and then check the consistency. If it’s still too stiff add another half tablespoon (1 tbsp was enough for me) and repeat until you have the desired consistency. Finally we want to add a bit of red food colouring (use gel colours, as they won’t affect the consistency of the buttercream – I’ve used Americolor in Tulip Red) and again, add a few drops at a time, mix them in well and if you want a stronger colour payoff add a few more. Make sure to scrape the bowl down again and mix a final few seconds to make sure that the colour is evenly mixed in.
You can either pipe simple rose swirls onto the cupcake or pipe a rose with individual petals onto the cupcake. The simple rose swirl will mean less buttercream on the cupcake (half the buttercream recipe will be enough) and you’ll need a large closed star piping tip (e.g. Wilton 2D). If you want to pipe single petals onto the cupcake you’ll need a large straight petal tip (e.g. Wilton 126). Put the piping tip into the piping bag and cut the end off before pushing the tip through to the end. Fold the edges over and place the bag into a tall glass. This makes filling it up easier. Put the buttercream in the piping bag, twist the end closed and give it a good shake. You want to get rid off as much air that is trapped in the bag as possible, as it will disturb your piping pattern whilst piping.
Core the cupcakes with an apple corer or a knife and fill them with Nutella (I filled mine in a piping bag to make my life a bit easier). To pipe the rose swirl onto the cupcakes hold the piping bag with the closed star tip close to the cupcake and start piping the swirl from the middle and then around anti-clockwise. When the whole top of the cupcake is covered, finish it off with a quick swipe away from the cupcake.
Piping a rose with individual petals onto the cupcake is a bit harder. Hold the cupcake in one hand and the piping bag in the other. You want to pipe four stripes overlapping each other flat onto the middle of the cupcake, repeat that a second time to build height. Then hold the large opening of the tip facing the cupcake and pipe five stripes (petals) around the “stack” that we built. You want each petal to start in the middle of the last one and they want to lift away from the cupcake in the middle and finish back on the top of the cupcake. Repeat with the next row of petals, this time pipe seven overlapping petals. As you move further out angle the tip further out, this way the rose “opens” as you pipe the outer petals.
Please watch the video tutorial to get a better idea of the piping techniques. I’ve got a feeling that my words might not be eloquent enough to paint a good picture…