[Cakes & Bakes] Chunky Monkey Cupcakes

My family members have been some of the best supporters for my bakes and I love making things they like, especially for special occasions.

Mum has always been a fan of chocolate banana cakes, especially the one from Secret Recipe. So I’ve long set my mind on baking a choco banana cake for her birthday 🙂

Searched through some recipes and finally decided to make a cupcake version instead as I really wanted to practice my piping.

I pretty much followed the recipe to a T (which is extremely simple) and the cupcakes turned out really moist and fragrant! Some things to share from the experience:

– Make sure the banana is ripe enough so that the aroma and taste are will not be overwhelmed by the chocolate

– I used Valhorna cocoa powder and the chocolate flavour is really rich and intense

– The cupcakes stay moist in the fridge and still tastes pretty good 3 days old

– If you’re lazy or have no time to prepare the frosting, it tastes pretty awesome as a chocolate banana muffin too!

– I sprinkled some chopped almonds on top of the frosting to create some contrast in terms of colour and the texture. The nutty flavour also helps to cut the richness of the cake and frosting

– Washing up after making chocolate-anything is such a back-breaking chore… But it’s worth it 🙂

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“All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.”
― Charles M. Schulz

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[Quick Fix] Chocolate Dipped Strawberries

Had a tough time deciding if I should categorise this under Sweet Treat or under Quick Fix, because it’s both, really!

We received a box of lovely lovely long-stemed strawberries from my mother-in-law (MIL, for future entries) over the weekends and while munching on it during tea time today, I realised they are just PERFECT for dipping!

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It costs about $18 for 500g of strawberries, but they taste really great. Crunchy, sweet, slight tartness, and really fleshy.

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I used dark chocolate from IKEA which costs less than $1 a bar and tastes so good when melted (I’ll probably do another post on the awesome stuff you can get at IKEA because there are just so many hidden treasures!).

 

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I felt this odd sense of tranquility when I was stirring the chocolate over the hot water bath. It’s unbelievably therapeutic.

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Before dipping, I kept the washed strawberries in the fridge and brought them out just before dipping so that the chocolate can set quicker due to the temperature difference.

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The whole process was so quick and easy, it took barely 15 mins, I guess? I was enjoying the process so much I forgot to check the time!

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After popping the nicely dipped strawberries into the fridge and waiting for it to set, what do you do with excess melted chocolate?

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Pray hard you have chilled bananas at home!

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And to thank the lovely MIL who has always been providing us with our weekly dose of anti-oxidents, we’re gonna leave these as a little surprise for her when she visits!

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If you have some strawberries and chocolates at home (some extra bananas will be even better), go prepare a warm water bath and start melting away!

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