Saturday, 31 December 2011

Fairy Cakes with Feijoa Glaze and Lime Sugar

Fairy Cakes with Feijoa Glaze and Lime Sugar

If you're lucky enough to find some Foraged Feijoa or if you're really lucky and happen to have a bush or two, here's a good way to enjoy them.

Fairy Cakes are traditionally made in mini cupcake cases but you can make them in larger ones if you can't find the small ones.  Since this batter makes lovely sponge and is quite versatile, you can use it for making  little cakes of other shapes and sizes too, just use your imagination and any other pan you have on hand. Just be sure to not  to over bake them.  Remove them from the oven when they spring back when touched.  Don't let them brown!

If you don't have any Feijoa on hand you can substitute passion fruit with equal success.

Makes 24 mini-cakes
or 12 regular cupcakes 

10 minutes for mini-cakes
15 minutes for regular cupcakes

24 mini cupcake cases or 12 regular cupcake cases
2-12 hole mini cupcake baking pans or 1 12 hole regular cupcake pan
Fine mesh sieve
Microplane zester or other fine grater

1/2 cup (110g) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup (95g) granulated white sugar
2 eggs
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 plus 1/3 cups (115g) of all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

For the glaze 
12 ripe Feijoa to make 1 cup of deseeded pulp
1 teaspoon lime juice
1/2 cup (55g) icing sugar, sifted
A few drops of yellow food colouring 

For the lime sugar 
Finely grated zest of one lime
2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1.  Line your muffin tins with paper or silicon cases. 
2.  Mix together the flour, baking powder and salt together.  Set aside.
3.  Mix the milk and vanilla together. Set aside.
4.  In the bowl of an electric mixer or using a hand-held mixer, beat the butter and sugar together on high speed until light and fluffy.  Add the eggs, one at a time and beat well after each.  It's OK if the mixture looks curdled.  This is normal.
5.  With the mixer on low or by hand, alternate adding the flour and milk to the butter mixture in two additions until just incorporated. 
6.  Fill each of the cases or mini cake moulds until one third full.  You can use a pastry bag, or drop the batter from a spoon.  Be sure not to overfill the cases and try not to get batter on the sides.   When they are finished they should not be higher than the height of the case.
7.  Bake until they just spring back, they should not be browned at all.
8.  When they are finished baking, pop them from the baking pan onto a cooling rack but leave the cakes in their individual cases.

While the cakes are cooling, prepare the glaze and lime sugar.

1.  Cut the Feijoa in half and scoop out the soft insides into a sieve and press them through the sieve to remove the seeds.  You should have about 1 cup of Feijoa pulp.  Pour the mixture into a blender or food processor.  Add the lime juice and process until smooth.  
2.  Pour the puréed Feijoa into a sieve resting over a medium sized bowl.  Using a spoon, stir and press the purée through the sieve into the bowl.  
3.  Add the icing sugar and stir well.  Add the food colouring a drop at a time until the colour is pleasing to you.  Pour the glaze into a measuring cup with a lip or a pitcher for pouring.

Lime Sugar
Grate the lime zest into a bowl and add the sugar.  Using your fingers, rub the zest and the sugar together until it's well mixed.  It will smell wonderful.

Arrange the cakes on a baking tray and carefully pour a bit of the glaze on top of each until the top appears level.  Allow the glaze to crust for about 1/2 hour.

Sprinkle a bit of the lime sugar in the centre of each.  Allow the glaze to crust for an additional 1/2 hour or so and serve.  Enjoy!

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