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Chocolate Easter Cupcakes and Crystallised Flowers

Amaretto Easter Cupcakes with Crystallised Flowers

Cupcakes, Easter | 28th April 2011 | By

Almost truffle like in their consistency and deliciousness, these chocolate amaretto Easter cupcakes are a real delight. Amaretto soaked raisins and a layer of marzipan surrounded by chocolate sponge and topped with amaretto chocolate buttercream. Crystallised spring flowers finish them off beautifully.

There were so many influences that went into the creation of these amaretto chocolate Easter cupcakes that I’ve rather lost track of them all. But bear with me.

Crystallised Flowers

Kath started me off with her crystallised violets. It all came flooding back, how I used to crystallise primroses every Easter when I was young. I haven’t done it for many many years now. But with Easter fast approaching, some holiday, a bit of nostalgia and with enthusiasm renewed, I wanted to try these again.

The first thing I had to do was go to our local art shop and buy myself a paintbrush. In terms of effort, that was the most time consuming bit. It’s actually very easy to make crystallised flowers, you just need time and space for them to dry out.

The next step is to pick the flowers. I gathered some primroses, a violet and a pansy from my garden. I didn’t have many violets or pansy’s and didn’t want to denude the plants. If you’re picking your own flowers it’s important to ensure they are edible ones. The also need to be clean and not sprayed or polluted by dogs or motorised vehicles. If you don’t have any suitable flowers for picking, it’s now relatively easy to buy edible flowers.

Crystallised Flowers

If you pick your own, leave the stems on as they act as a handle whilst you’re painting them. You’ll need to use tweezers to hold the flowers instead if you don’t have any.

So once you have the flowers, all you need to do is paint them with egg white and dredge them with caster sugar. Leave them to dry for twelve hours or so and they’re done. Keep them in an airtight tin and they should last for a few days.

Crystallised flowers give a rather delightful and unexpected crunch. Primroses are particularly delicious as they have a subtle but distinctive floral taste.

Amaretto Easter Cupcakes

Then I saw the recipe for Paul A Young’s Simnel Brownies and I knew I would be making those in the not too distant future. And indeed, here is my recipe for Easter brownies. But, as I’d set my mind on decorative flowers, brownies didn’t seem quite the thing. They would, in fact, have been an ideal entry for the April’s marzipan We Should Cocoa, but I already had this battenberg in mind for that.

However, the simnel idea stuck. Hmmmm, cupcakes would make a good showcase for crystallised flowers I thought. I could add marzipan in the middle and maybe use some raisins. OK, what to soak the raisins in? Well, that’s a no brainer, with the almond marzipan theme, it has to be amaretto.

Amaretto Easter cupcake with crystallised primrose.

I then saw Carl’s lovely hidden hearts, which made me think, rather than just adding chunks of marzipan, I could add a layer in the middle instead. All I had to do was roll it out and use a smallish cutter to fit the cupcakes exactly.

Dan Lepard also played his part, by piping crosses onto some of his Easter cupcakes. Peggy of Fake It ‘Til You Make It very kindly sent me a wodge of disposable piping bags after I broke the reusable one I got for Christmas on my very first attempt at piping macaroons. So thanks to Peggy, I thought I’d try Dan’s crosses.

These Easter cupcakes require some preparation on the day prior to baking them. So it’s best to plan ahead. If you’re going to make crystallised flowers, they will need several hours to dry. Also, the raisins will be much nicer the longer they soak in the amaretto. So try and get them soaking the day before if you can.

These amaretto chocolate cakes featured at another Easter tea eaten in my mother’s Cornish garden. And also on these Easter platters.

Easter tea featuring amaretto easter cupcakes.

As a flavour combination, these ingredients work really well together. The amaretto enhances the marzipan flavour and the alcohol soaked raisins add another level of richness. And it’s all brought together very nicely with the chocolate holding centre stage – as it should at Easter. The cakes are moist and truffle like and also rather filling – in a good way. The chocolate topping gives yet another delicious dimension.

Other Easter Cupcakes You Might Like

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Thanks for visiting Tin and Thyme. If you make these amaretto Easter cupcakes, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below. Do share photos on social media too and use the hashtag #tinandthyme, so I can spot them.

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Chocolate Amaretto Easter Cupcakes. PIN IT.

Chocolate Amaretto Easter Cupcakes decorated with Crystallised Flowers

Amaretto Easter Cupcakes – The Recipe

Amaretto Easter Cupcakes with Crystallised Flowers
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5 from 1 vote

Amaretto Easter Cupcakes

Chocolate Easter cupcakes with amaretto soaked raisins and a hidden marzipan layer inside. They're topped with amaretto chocolate buttercream and decorated with crystallised flowers.
Prep Time1 hr 10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Drying and Soaking Time8 hrs
Total Time9 hrs 30 mins
Course: Afternoon Tea, Snack
Cuisine: British
Keyword: amaretto, chocolate, cupcakes, Easter, marzipan, raisins
Servings: 12 cupcakes
Calories: 350kcal

Ingredients

Crystallised Flowers

  • 1 egg white
  • caster sugar
  • edible flowers (with stems if possible)

Cakes

  • 60 g raisins
  • 2 tbsp amaretto
  • 100 g 85% dark chocolate
  • 125 g unsalted butter - softened
  • 125 g molasses sugar
  • 2 large eggs (I used duck eggs)
  • 125 g flour (½ wholemeal spelt, ½ plain)
  • 1 heaped tbsp cocoa
  • a pinch of fine sea or rock salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tbsp yogurt (I used 0% fat Greek yoghurt)
  • 150 g marzipan

Chocolate Buttercream

  • remaining melted chocolate from the cakes
  • 50 g unsalted butter - softened
  • 50 g icing sugar
  • 2 tbsp amaretto

Instructions

Crystallised Flowers

  • Beat the egg white briefly in a small bowl.
  • Place a couple of spoonfuls of caster sugar in another small bowl.
  • Make sure your edible flowers are clean and dry.
  • Hold the flowers by the stem and using a clean artist's paintbrush, paint the tops and undersides with the egg white.
  • As soon as you've painted each flower dip it in the sugar and sprinkle more over as needed with a teaspoon. Shake off the access then lay them down on a tray lined with baking paper to dry. Cut off any stems at this point.
  • Leave to dry over night, then put in an airtight tin until ready to use. They should last a few days.

Cakes

  • Soak the raisins in the amaretto overnight in a covered bowl. Give an occasional stir if you're passing.
  • Melt the chocolate in a bowl suspended over a pan of hot, but not boiling, water.
  • Cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.
  • Beat in the eggs.
  • Sieve in the dry ingredients and stir until just incorporated.
  • Stir in about ⅓ of the melted chocolate and the yoghurt.
  • Mix in the raisins and any remaining ameretto.
  • Spoon half the mixture into 12 muffin holder lined with cupcake cases.
  • Roll out the marzipan and use a 5cm circular cutter to stamp out 12 rounds.
  • Place over the cupcake mixture, then cover with the remaining mixture.
  • Bake at 180℃ (350℉, Gas 4)  for 20 minutes until risen and firm to the touch.
  • Turn out onto a wire rack to cool.

Chocolate Buttercream

  • Add the butter to the remaining melted chocolate. If the chocolate has hardened, just place it back onto a pan of hot water.
  • Sift in the icing sugar and beat until smooth.
  • Stir in the amaretto.
  • Either use to pipe crosses onto the cakes or spread it over the tops with a palate knife.
  • Place a crystallised flower on the top of each cake.

Notes

If you don't have any stems with your flowers, use tweezers to hold them instead.
Please note: calories and other nutritional information are per serving. They're approximate and will depend on exact ingredients used.

Nutrition

Calories: 350kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 59mg | Sodium: 31mg | Potassium: 249mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 404IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 55mg | Iron: 2mg

 

Sharing

I am entering these chocolate Easter cupcakes for Julia Parsons annual Easter Cake Bake – a mouth watering feast for the eye, if ever there was one. You can see all the entries there from previous years, although this year’s round up has yet to be posted. In fact you still have three days left to enter if you feel so inspired.

32 Comments

  1. Suelle

    28th April 2011 at 8:09 am

    These sound wonderful – a great combination of flavours!

    Reply
  2. Maria♥

    28th April 2011 at 10:23 am

    Cupcakes look so pretty with the flowers!

    Maria
    x

    Reply
  3. Joanna @ Zeb Bakes

    28th April 2011 at 4:32 pm

    So beautiful! I have never tried this and this is inspirational – Hope they do well x

    Reply
  4. Xinmei @ Pudding Pie Lane

    28th April 2011 at 6:48 pm

    These crosses are very beautiful! Like the sound of soaking the raisins in amaretto. It looks like quite a complicated process but it looks worth it 🙂

    Reply
  5. Janice

    28th April 2011 at 7:02 pm

    OMG amaretto and chocolate plus flowers, gorgeous! My mum has a thing about eating flowers and since I was quite young was always dotting her salads with nasturtiums and other assorted edible flowers. Crystalised flowers are so pretty. Great job there.

    Reply
  6. Celia

    28th April 2011 at 8:50 pm

    Choc, these are soooo pretty! You’ve certainly been busy this Easter – I love seeing three posts filled with luscious looking chocolate and candy coloured goodies! The nests look particularly yummy – must see if I can find some of those cute eggs next year…

    Reply
  7. Suman Singh

    28th April 2011 at 8:57 pm

    Cupcake looks so pretty and delightful..

    Reply
  8. MissCakeBaker

    28th April 2011 at 10:47 pm

    These cakes are so pretty!

    Reply
  9. Mostly About Chocolate Blog

    29th April 2011 at 6:33 pm

    These look stunningly gorgeous and now I wish I had flowers growing but I really don’t know if it’d work as well for me. Yours look more beautiful than anything I bake ever turns out 🙂

    Reply
  10. Johanna GGG

    30th April 2011 at 12:03 am

    how clever – just the sort of piping I want to do and I love your flowers and the marzipan hearts – after trying some marzipan in choc chip cookies I am sure I would love these

    Reply
  11. Chele

    30th April 2011 at 8:16 am

    So delicate! Perfect looking cupcakes Choclette ;0)

    Reply
  12. Gloria

    1st May 2011 at 1:31 am

    Choclette I think these muffins look beauty and perfect, x gloria

    Reply
  13. Choclette

    1st May 2011 at 7:46 pm

    Suelle – thank you. I’m pleased to say they did get a few accolades.

    Maria – thank you.

    Joanna – it’s really not that difficult. As you know, I’m not into faffy, but I would quite happily do the flowers again.

    Xinmei – the amaretto soaked raisins were rather scrummy and these weren’t nearly as complicated to make as the Battenberg.

    Janice – thank you. If there are any to be had, we also use flowers on our salads – it makes them so pretty.

    Celia – Thank you. I would have said Easter is a good time for chocolate, but as you know pretty much any time is a good time for chocolate on my blog and yours 😉

    Suman – thank you.

    MCB – thank you, I don’t always manage pretty, so it’s particularly good when I do.

    Mostly About Choc – Thank you for the compliment, but I’m sure that’s not in the least bit true. The flowers aren’t at all difficult to do, just take a bit of time.

    Johannaa – I’m sure you would like them, they were rather good, though I say so myself :-S As for the piping, I only managed the one!

    Chele – that is a complement indeed coming from you. Thank you.

    Gloria – thank you, you’re very kind.

    Reply
  14. cityhippyfarmgirl

    1st May 2011 at 10:30 pm

    Sooo pretty! I love the flowers.
    Amaretto soaked raisins? Yes please.

    Reply
  15. Kath

    2nd May 2011 at 9:48 am

    Finally Blogger will allow me to comment on your site again, I seem to have been having some issue with Google. I absolutely adore the flowers and the cupcakes have my favourite things in them with chocolate, marzipan and Amaretto. I have said it before and I will say it again – lucky old CT. x

    Reply
  16. Choclette

    3rd May 2011 at 12:53 pm

    CityHippy – thank you. Both flowers and raisins are a winner.

    Kath – glad you saw the flowers. You were the inspiration after all. And CT gets tubbier by the week 😉

    Reply
  17. Ananda Rajashekar

    3rd May 2011 at 5:35 pm

    oh those flowers are so very pretty and i so much wanted to try it soon thanks for the link

    Reply
  18. Mostly About Chocolate Blog

    8th May 2011 at 3:20 pm

    I’m the one who just had to double bake her brownie – trust me when I say you did way better than I could 🙂

    Reply
  19. James B

    17th May 2011 at 12:41 pm

    Thanks for putting how to crystalize flowers.

    Reply
  20. Choclette

    17th May 2011 at 7:25 pm

    Ananda – hope you give these a try – the flowers are well worth it.

    Mostly About Choc – OK point taken, but I’ve still seen some nice looking baking on your blog.

    James B – you’re welcome. Are you going to give them a try?

    Reply
  21. diane

    17th May 2011 at 7:53 pm

    these sound so yummy. I will try them soon.
    From one Polish girl to another..dobrze zjeść

    Reply
  22. Choclette

    29th May 2011 at 10:25 am

    Diane – thank you.

    Reply
  23. JaynesDen

    7th February 2013 at 12:06 pm

    These look so beautiful. I bet they taste divine.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      9th February 2013 at 8:58 pm

      Thank you Jayne. I think I might have to try them again – just to make sure 😉

      Reply
  24. Maya Russell

    9th February 2013 at 8:34 am

    That’s a work of art! Beautiful and looks delicious too.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      9th February 2013 at 9:00 pm

      Thanks Maya. Art and I generally don’t get on, so I’m pleased you like them 🙂

      Reply
  25. Dee Johnson

    11th March 2013 at 8:57 pm

    They look totally delish. I would love to have a try at these. I would love to be able to bake good but for some reason nothing ever turns out as it is meant to. Will give it a good go though. Thanks.

    Reply
  26. mummy24

    14th March 2013 at 8:35 pm

    Love these with the little flowers – look great!

    Reply
  27. Shelley Jessup

    19th March 2013 at 9:07 pm

    oh my goodness everything you do just looks so good! have bookmarked this page :0)

    Reply
  28. JaynesDen

    28th March 2013 at 12:16 pm

    These look so pretty.

    Reply
  29. Judith Luscombe

    17th April 2013 at 11:13 am

    Love amaretto, must try these next Easter, sure they will be delicious!

    Reply
  30. Spencer @ Moo-Lolly-Bar

    3rd April 2014 at 3:17 am

    How creative! They look almost too good to eat.

    Reply

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