Chocolate buns for Easter treats

In my last post I mentioned that I had recently received some cupcake cases and Easter picks in a gift, from the Baking Mad website. Yesterday I decided it was time to press them into use:

I pinched an excellent recipe from Karen Burns Booth (of the beautiful Lavender and Lovage website), courtesy of a cookbook I got at Christmas. Karen’s cakes feature on the front cover of the book:

Her recipe is forΒ Karen’s Little Chocolate and Violet Fancies which end up looking like the above, quite exquisite. This is her recipe:

Mine weren’t quite up to Karen’s high standard, and as I wanted to use my new cake cases and Easter picks, they ended up looking like this:

I didn’t have any violets or violet sugar, and I fancied using Earl Grey tea, so I tweaked the recipe and ended up with Earl Grey Chocolate Buns.

From my youth I remember that my mum always called this sort of individual cake a ‘bun’, as opposed to a ‘fairy cake’ or a ‘cupcake’ (I don’t think that word was known in Scotland until fairly recently) or indeed a ‘muffin’ (which, to Brits, is something quite different from the large cakey delight known across the pond).

A few days ago, before I had decided to borrow Karen’s recipe, I was thinking about what sort of cakes to put into my new cake cases and liked the idea of making them chocolate flavoured, but with a little surprise inside.

When I saw these creme filled chocolate eggs in my local supermarket, I thought they’d do for the surprise:

It seemed a pity to remove the pretty foil wrappings, but I don’t think they’d have improved the taste of the cakes:

After putting cake mix into a batch of cake cases I squidged an egg into each one:

Then I stuck another blob of cake mix on top of each egg:

I put too much cake mix in each cake case and so the buns overflowed a bit:

To my mind there’s nothing wrong with a cake that’s a bit on the large side, so I acceped their burgeoning girths, slapped on the icing and threw on a scattering of decorations while whistling a merry tune:

Once the icing was on I planted plant Easter flags and declared the cakes ready for consumption:

I was interested to see how the creme filled eggs inside might have been affected by baking, and was pleased to find that they had remained intact:

The creme was still very much as it had been in its pre-baked condition, and the thin chocolate outer layer had begun to melt nicely:

I made a total of 16 cakes using the recipe above. Most of them have gone into the freezer, where I hope they will survive all right with their ganache icing, but if they come out looking a bit the worse for wear I could perhaps bung them into an ovenproof dish and make them into a hot chocolate pudding.


48 thoughts on “Chocolate buns for Easter treats

    • Thank you kindly, Karen. Your little fancies have been calling me ever since I set eyes on that book. One day I’d like to make them properly with the violets on top, such a beautiful creation!

  1. Those look luscious… I love surprises like that in a little cake. A friend brought me cookies yesterday that had a surprise like that…a little miniature Snickers in the center…very fun.

  2. This is cake making after my own style, Lorna! A little overflow never hurt anybody. Don’t think they would have lasted long enough to get the cute flags in around here.

  3. You are an adventurous cook. I am one of those cooks who daren’t adapt a recipe. My husband, who is the better cook, laughs at my fear of changing a recipe ever so slightly. I just don’t have the confidence.
    Your adaptation of the recipe was obviously a huge success.

    • I’m not always brave enough to do adapt something, it depends what it is. I made a pear pudding yesterday for the first time and wanted to use different ingredients but because I hadn’t made it before I stuck resolutely to the recipe. With cakes it’s a bit easier for me because I’ve made so many in the past, I think it’s a case of tweaking things little by little when you feel confident about making a certain type of thing. Mind you, at least if you stick to the recipe you’re unlikely to have any major disasters (I’ve had a few of those….).

  4. That is such a cool idea. I bet you could transfer it to any combination of candies and cakes to make something a little different. It is like a little surprise in the center of the cupcake!

  5. what a brilliant idea! love the eggs in the cupcakes. we also called them “buns” when i was little. what a fun little set of cups and flags. I hope the freezing works out well for you.

    • That’s interesting that you also called them ‘buns’, I think a lot of people think of a bun as a bready sort of thing rather than a cake. I think the freezing will work okay, my only concern is that the icing might not look quite so glossy/edible after defrosting, but I’ll try not to let that worry me. πŸ™‚

  6. Lol, looks like you’ve had chocolate on the brain too! When you mentioned Chocolate and Earl grey tea, my brain immediately went into overdrive. How sensational it truly sounds! Looks like it’ll be a very happy Easter indeed (at yours) this year πŸ™‚

    • Doesn’t everyone have chocolate on the brain around this time of year? I remember an Earl Grey tea cake on your blog once that I’d love to try making. The buns don’t taste of Earl Grey tea at all in fact, because the chocolate flavour is so strong. I think next time I’ll have to use Earl Grey without such a strong accompaniment, because it does have quite a delicate flavour itself. I always look forward to Easter chocolate!

  7. They look amazing, and I love the idea of putting a small creme egg inside. I would never have thought of doing that! Beautifully decorated, too. Craving chocolate cake now… no, no, no!

  8. Lorna I didn’t have time to leave a comment when I first read this post, and let me just say that I have had these cakes on my brain ever since!!!

    • Thanks Lucinda. The recipe includes 3 tablespoons of boiling water and I made the water into strong tea with three teabags, let them sit for a bit and then heated them up again so that the tea was boiling when it went into the cake mix. It didn’t really work though because it was overwhelmed by the chocolate flavour.

    • Strangely enough, I’ve never thought of putting it in scones, but I’m sure it would work in a cake without such a strong competing flavour. I’ve seen recipes for Earl Grey and lemon or orange cupcakes and I can imagine that working well, any sort of citrus flavour bringing out the Earl Grey nicely.

  9. These look like the most delicious Easter treats I could imagine! They really turned out wonderful – I’m sure I wouldn’t be able to make them last very long… πŸ™‚

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