I made these cupcakes a while ago for an SPCA cupcake day fundraiser some of the students had organised at school. I think these ones never made it to the fundraising table – another staff member purchased them before anyone else got a chance! And, good on her – these cupcakes are divine. The flavours of the cake, icing and candied walnuts (and the caramel drizzle – don’t forget that!) go together perfectly creating one sophisticatedly moreish cupcake. The candied walnuts are really easy to make and are my new favourite thing. I actually first made them to go in a broccoli and cranberry salad (so good), but here they add a delicious crunch to the sweet taste of the banana infused icing.
1 ½ cups self raising flour
⅓ cup caster sugar
⅔ cup mashed banana
½ cup roughly chopped walnuts
½ cup milk
⅔ cup chopped walnuts
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 ½ tablespoons honey
½ teaspoon sea salt
Banana Icing and Caramel drizzle:
¼ cup mashed bananas
½ teaspoon lemon juice
½ teaspoon vanilla essence
3 ¼ cups icing sugar
½ cup caramel sauce (I used Hershey’s Caramel Sauce)
Preheat the oven to 190°C. Grease or line a 12 hole muffin pan with cupcake liners.
In a large bowl mix together flour, sugar and butter until mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
Add in mashed banana, walnuts, egg and milk, and stir to combine.
Spoon the mixture into the prepared muffin pans and bake for 20 minutes.
To make the candied walnuts, place all the ingredients in a small saucepan over a medium heat. Cook for 5 to 8 minutes, until the mixture is bubble and the walnuts have caramelized and turned a golden brown.
Line a dinner plate of baking tray with baking paper. Place the walnuts on the baking paper and place in the refrigerator for at least 5 minutes.
To make the icing and to decorate:
Cream together the butter, banana, lemon juice and vanilla essence. Slowly beat in icing sugar, adding more if needed to make a nice fluffy, spreadable icing. If the mix is too thick, beat in a few drops of warm water at a time until the desired consistency is reached.
Pipe the icing onto the cupcakes and decorate with the candied walnut pieces. Drizzle caramel sauce over the top of each cupcake.