- 225g (8oz) butter
- 200g (7oz) light muscovado
- 454g jar golden syrup, plus 130ml (4½fl oz) to drizzle
- 2 large free-range eggs
- 300ml (½pt) whole milk
- 450g (1lb) self-raising flour
- for the icing
- 600g (1lb 5oz) full-fat Philadelphia
- zest 2 lemons
- 300g (10oz) icing sugar
- you will need
- 2 large 12-hole muffin trays lined with paper cases, a piping bag and a star nozzle
Heat the oven to 170C, 150C fan, 325F, gas 3. To make the cupcakes, melt the butter, sugar and golden syrup gently until the sugar has dissolved. While it’s melting, beat the eggs with the milk until well incorporated.
When the butter mixture has melted, stir well then stir in the flour and a pinch of salt until smooth. Add the egg and milk mix, and stir again until smooth. We used an electric beater on the lowest setting – don’t overbeat the mix; stop as soon as it turns smooth. It will be quite runny.
Divide the mixture between the cupcake cases using a ladle, then bake for 20 minutes until risen, springy and golden. Remove from the oven and drizzle the remaining golden syrup over the tops while still warm – it will sink in as the cakes cool.
To make the icing, beat all the ingredients together with an electric whisk until smooth. Transfer to the piping bag, and pipe swirls on top of each cake. Decorate with cupcake flags. The un-iced sponges freeze well and will become stickier and more delicious if left for a couple of days before icing. The iced cakes should be kept in the fridge and should be brought back to room temperature before serving.
American cream cheese frosting holds up better in the heat than traditional buttercream and lends a delicious tang to the sweet sponge