Guest chef

Kim Morphew

London-based food stylist and writer Kim Morphew has been contributing to Sainsbury's magazine since 2008. She is creator of the children's cookery book and baking range, The Kookey Chefs.

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Goodness gracious giant cupcake

  • Serves 18-20
  • Makes 1 giant cupcake
  • Prep 1 hr 30 mins
  • Total time 2 hrs 30 mins, plus cooling
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Goodness gracious giant cupcake
Goodness gracious giant cupcake

step by step

  • 1Preheat the oven to 180°C, fan 160°C, gas 4 and grease the 2 tin sections with butter. Add 1 tablespoon flour and shake around the tin to coat, then tip out the excess. Put the cocoa in a small bowl and gradually whisk in 150ml boiling water until smooth.
  • 2In a large bowl, whisk together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Gradually add the eggs, whisking after each addition until combined. Don't worry if it starts to curdle. Add the cocoa paste and whisk again briefly, then fold in the flour until combined.
  • 3Divide the mixture between the prepared tin sections, filling them to 2.5cm from the top. Bake in the oven for 55-60 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted into the centre of the cakes. Leave in the tins and turn onto a cooling rack to flatten the slight domes. Allow them to cool like this for 10 minutes, then remove the tins and leave to go cold.
  • 4How to decorate: Make the buttercream: in a large bowl, whisk together the butter, vanilla, icing sugar and 3 tablespoons slightly cooled boiled water until very light and fluffy. Cover and set aside until needed. Knead the white ready to roll icing on a sheet of baking paper with the blue and green food colouring until it is turquoise. Wrap in clingfilm until needed.
  • 5Put the cupcake base upside down on a cake board and spread a thin layer of buttercream around the sides. Dust a clean surface with a little cornflour and roll out the turquoise icing into a rectangle, about 48cm x 11cm, then trim the short sides so they are neat. Carefully wrap the icing around the cupcake base, ensuring the short ends just overlap. Smooth over with your hands to seal the join and to remove any air bubbles. Fold the excess over the top (which is the bottom of the cake), then trim flat with a sharp knife. Very carefully turn the cake the right way up and put back on the cake board. If necessary, trim the fondant to the height of the cake. Using a wooden spoon handle, create the fluted appearance of the cupcake case by rubbing the icing up and down, all the way around.
  • 6Spread the strawberry jam over the top of the base and spread a generous amount of buttercream on the bottom of the cupcake top. Then sandwich the two together to reassemble the cupcake.
  • 7To make the gold ribbons, knead and roll the modelling paste on a clean surface until softened, it will be very hard at first but keep rolling it. (You can microwave it on a high setting for 5 seconds to speed things along.) Always keep the paste wrapped in clingfilm to stop it drying out.
  • 8When softened, roll out half the paste on a piece of baking paper until very thin. Press a 7cm fluted round cutter into the paste, then move the cutter down by 5mm and stamp out another. This will create a semi circle hoop of 'ribbon'. Repeat to make 8 at this size, then 8 smaller ones using a 5cm cutter, re-rolling the paste where necessary. Using a damp paintbrush, brush 1 small semi circle of ribbon and stick to the top edge of the cupcake base. Continue with the remaining 7 around the cake. Repeat the same process with the large ribbons, ensuring they hang just below the first.
  • 9Make the gold discs: roll 8 small balls, about the size of a pea, from a little of the gold modelling paste and lightly flatten. Press 1 edible gold pearl into the centre of each disc. Brush the back of the discs with water and stick on the cake where the ribbons join.
  • 10Put a large, open star nozzle into a piping bag and fill with remaining buttercream. To support the bag, put the piping bag in a large, empty jug as you fill. Pipe a line of buttercream around the middle where the top cake meets the base.
  • 11Pipe roses all over the top of the cake to cover it. To pipe roses, start at the lower edge of the cupcake top, choose a spot and then pipe buttercream in an anti-clockwise direction to make a spiral, then sharply lift off. Repeat all the way around the cake, working your way to the top. Pipe little stars to fill in any gaps.
  • 12Finally, spray the cake all over with a little gold glitter spray and secure the ribbon around the base. Top with the crown when ready to serve.
  • How to make an edible crown:

    1. Roll out 50g gold modelling paste and stamp out 2 crowns using a crown cutter.

    2. Press edible gold pearls along the base of each crown, then put the crowns side by side.

    3. Press together to join 2 edges, then wrap around a glass. Press the other edges together to make a 3D crown.

    4. Leave to harden for a few hours then remove the glass.


    Recipe photograph by Martin Poole

Get ahead

The cake can be baked 1-2 days before icing and stored in a deep cake tin or freeze the uniced cake for up to 2 months. Once iced, it will keep for up to 3 days.

You will need

You will need

  • Eddingtons Giant Cupcake Pan, £7.99 (
  • a palette knife
  • 18cm round cake board
  • 7cm fluted round cutter
  • 1M or open star large piping nozzle
  • disposable piping bag
  • 50cm length of 25mm ribbon and tape (optional)
  • small toy crown or edible crown to decorate (optional)

For the cake

  • 350g butter, softened, plus a little extra for greasing
  • 350g self-raising flour, sifted, plus 1 tbsp for dusting
  • 75g cocoa
  • 350g caster sugar
  • 6 large eggs, beaten

For decorating

  • 375g butter, really soft
  • 1½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 750g icing sugar, sifted
  • 500g ready to roll soft white icing
  • ¼ tsp each Dr Oetker Sky Blue and Lime Green gel food colour
  • cornflour, for dusting
  • 5-6 tbsp seedless strawberry jam
  • 100g House of Cake gold colour modelling paste (you only need 50g if you’re not making the edible crown)
  • edible gold pearls
  • Cake Decor gold glitter spray

+ Nutritional Information