Belarus does not seem to do cakes. Please disagree with me if you can, but I cannot find any recipes in any of my books or on Google, as as they say – if it’s not on Google, it doesn’t happen! Please take it as a challenge – if you know a good Belarus cake recipe, send it my way and I will happily make it! Until this point, this cake will have to do. However, it thoroughly deserves its place, being very delicious!
The name Belarus literally translates as ‘White Russian’, with may different reasons for that name given – ranging from the race of people which populated the area to the colour of clothes that they wore. It was also mentioned in the official titles of the Russian Tsar, who is styled as ‘Tsar of all the Russias: the great, the little and the white’. There is also a fascinating suggestion that the description of regions by colour is based on the points of the compass: north being white, south – black, east – green and west – red.
However interesting these facts are, the White Russian in this context refers rather to a cocktail, consisting of vodka, Kahlua (a coffee-flavoured liquor) and cream. The cupcakes are flavoured with coffee, filled with whipped cream and topped with Kahlua frosting. They are then decorated with a chocolate cocktail stirrer, embellished with white chocolate stars and popping candy.
Note: There is no vodka in this cake due to primarily to personal opinion – I cannot stand it! I have never been able to taste it in the drink itself, so do not feel too bad about leaving it out. However, if you would like to include it I would suggest using a small amount to flavour the whipped cream filling.
White Russian Cupcakes
- 8oz plain flour
- 8oz caster sugar
- 8oz butter
- 3 tsp baking powder
- 3 tsbp instant coffee, dissolved in 1 tbsp boiling water
Whipped Cream Filling:
- 100ml whipped cream
- 3 tbsp icing sugar
- 40g butter
- 125g icing sugar
- 2 tbsp kahlua
- 10g dark chocolate
- Popping candy and white chocolate stars
Preheat the oven to gas mark 5, and line a bun tin with paper cases. Cream together the butter and sugar before beating in the eggs. Add the remainder of the ingredients and mix thoroughly until well combined. Spoon into the bun cases and bake for 30 minutes until brown, firm and well-risen. Remove from the oven and leave to cool completely before continuing.
While the cupcakes are cooking, make the chocolate shapes. On a sheet of greaseproof paper draw out 12 circles using a twopence piece as a guide. Melt the chocolate and spread a small amount on the paper to fill each circle. Pipe a straight line coming out from each circle, making a lollipop shape. Sprinkle with your chosen decorations and leave to set.
Make the whipped cream filling by beating together the cream, icing sugar until thick and creamy. Using a cupcake corer or a sharp knife remove the centre of the cupcake and fill with the vodka-infused cream.
Make the buttercream topping by creaming together the butter and icing sugar until thick and fluffy (about 5 minutes – don’t skimp as this bit is very important!). Add the Kahlua and mix in thoroughly. Spread or pipe on the top of each cupcake and decorate with the cooled chocolate cocktail stirrers.
Tune back in on Saturday for more chocolate-y goodness, this time from Lithuania!