Initially I didn't just want to put Malteasers into a cupcake, I wanted to recreate the flavour of the malty honeycomb in the sponge. I scratched around my cupboards looking for inspiration and found a few sachets of Horlicks lurking right at the back of my spice shelf, who knows how or why it came to be there but it was perfect!
The addition of horlicks added a really lovely subtle malt flavour to the sponge but they weren't massively "horlicks-y" which was just what I was going for. The flavour was lovely but the best bit was the smell. The smell of horlicks is something I find quite comforting, and add that to the already comforting smell of freshly baked and cake and your onto a winner.
On a bit of a whim, just before I popped them in the oven I decided to pop a couple of malteasers in the sponge, I thought that the crunchy, melty malteaser would be lovely nessled in the middle. What I didn't consider was the fact that malteasers are stupidly light and would float to the top of the cake while baking and therefore burn. I was not best pleased.
However I didn't let that put me off finishing them off with a dollop of icing and a healthy topping of malteasers.
Back in June I won some Renshaw goodies, one of which was a pack of Snip and Swirl icing. Basically ready made icing which you pipe straight from the packet using a series of guides to cut various nozzles (in theory).
I have to say I wasn't overly impressed with the icing. I snipped the pack into a star-type nozzle and found it didn't really work as it was suppose to. I also found the flavour a bit off, it was very sweet, almost alarmingly so.
A thin scraping on the top was all I could handle, the one I had piped had to be scraped clean before eating. I am not sure I would personally buy this product again as I prefer the freedom of making my own buttercreams and frostings and piping them. However, I think perhaps someone who was baking with little ones or didn't have the equipment to make their own it would be an OK substitute.
So the moral of this story for me was "always make your own icing".
Have you ever used ready made icing? Are there any good ones I should try?
N.B - after proof reading this post I realise I have used the word Malteaser about a flobbitygillion times... Apologies, but they are bloody good chocolate