Wednesday 31 October 2018

Chocolate Oreo Buttercream Cupcake Recipe

This is a dual purpose post; I'm in a great mood so I decided to share my recipe for Chocolate Oreo Buttercream Cupcakes, and then go on to tell you all about our amazing day.
chocolate Oreo buttercream cupcakes
I posted images of these cakes on Facebook and Instagram last week, with the note that I'm not a cake fan myself - I love baking and decorating them, but rarely eat them. Cake mix is far superior in my opinion. However, I am totally in love with Oreo buttercream and could eat it by the bucketload. I received several messages asking me to share the recipe, so who am I to deny everyone else the pleasure?! 
Here's the basic vanilla cupcake recipe:
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 150g unsalted butter, softened slightly in microwave OR 150g Stork margarine - I find this gives slightly fluffier, lighter cakes
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 150g self raising flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

(for chocolate cupcakes, I just reduce the self-raising flour quantity to 120g and add 30g cocoa)

I don't have any fancy cake food mixer (where's my violin?!) so I do it all by hand. First I mix butter and sugar together and stir hard so the mixture is soft and fluffy. Then add 1 egg with 1 spoonful of flour at a time and mix in at a medium pace to stop the eggs curdling, and finally tip in remains of flour, add vanilla extract and mix thoroughly.

One top tip; an ice cream scoop is a very handy way of transferring a good amount to each cake case. Fill the case about 2/3rds full, then put in an oven at 180 degrees C for around 14 minutes. I usually turn the tray around after 12 minutes just to make sure they are evenly cooked.

For the chocolate Oreo butter cream icing:
  • 140g unsalted butter, softened slightly
  • 280g icing sugar
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 Oreos - any flavour you like

It helps if your butter is a little soft to help mix the icing sugar initially but it's important not to over soften it as otherwise your final buttercream icing will end up too runny. Once mixed so the powder is not so loose, then I use an electric hand mixer on top speed to make sure the icing is super smooth.

Crush the Oreos up as small as you can - I use a Pampered Chef chopper for this as it's very effective (I'm not on commission for saying that, sadly). The swirl effect is made with a large nozzle and I use mini Oreos to decorate because they are so cute!

Now, on to the day's excitement. Regular readers of my blog will know that our younger daughter Sasha has a type of Autism called Pathological Demand Avoidance. She has very high levels of anxiety and often struggles to leave the house at all. Sometimes though, our children can surprise us when we least expect it.

This day started pretty much the same as our other half-term holiday days, with a fair amount of hanging around and being lazy.
stephs two girls on sofa
Yesterday evening though, Sasha had returned to an idea she'd had a few weeks ago, of making a bed for one of her dolls. She had shelved it because she got frustrated at not knowing what to do or how to make one, but all of a sudden she decided she could draw up some blueprints for it (I'm pinning that great idea on her having seen it on YouTube somewhere). I ran with the idea and suggested that we could make a trip to Hobbycraft the next day, to buy the required materials, if she wanted to. All was well again, apart from the fear of nightmares leading to me having to sleep in her bed with her, again... but that's a different story. 

Early the next morning I had a mad scramble to find some blue paper and a white pencil. It almost all went wrong when the paper and pencil I had found didn't provide the right kind of result, but miraculously I pulled some blue card and white chalk out of the bag at just the right time. Phew. A few quick squiggles later, and we had an idea of what we'd want. 

Two hours later, and the fear of leaving the house had kicked in. Sasha was reluctant to tear herself off the sofa and made lots of excuses to not go out. We had to wait in for a parcel delivery until mid afternoon anyway - a giant size box from TK Maxx, containing no less than nine pairs of trainers for Sasha to try on. (This leads on from previous posts of mine explaining how difficult it is to buy any type of new shoes for her, as she won't go out to shops to try any on).
stephs two girls outside
Sasha had a quick look at the trainers and was quite excited, so with her mood lifted a little I jumped on the chance to encourage her out. Big Sis came up with the great idea of looking for slime making ingredients when we were out, and that increased the excitement level a little more. Sadly for us, Hobbycraft is about a 25 minute drive away. Sasha was visibly stressed in the car (it's not my bad driving, honest!) but thankfully we made it without incident and the girls skipped happily into the shop together. 
stephs two girls in hobbycraft
I made sure not to get stressed about how much was going into the basket (to be fair, although their Dad may feign a coronary later, he knows it's still cheaper than National Trust membership or a day out at a theme park... but only just). Several giggles later, we had what wanted so made it out and across the way to Boots for the contact lens solution (needed for slime, anyone not in the know). At this point Sasha started dragging her feet because she'd had enough, but we dashed in and out and then headed home. Via a chip shop (or two - eldest is a Burger King fan whereas it has to be McD for Sasha). 

Back home after tea the Trainer trying on happened - and Hallelujah, one pair has been announced acceptable! I'm hoping to buy the same ones in the next size up now too, if I can, to save the pain next time... 

Then came the magic. As I prepared my tea, the two girls sat together at the kitchen table and made slime together. 
stephstwogirls making slime
I'm just going to pause and let that sink in. It really has been so long since Sasha has come to do anything in the kitchen. 

It was such a joy to see them together - if you are on Instagram you can see some little video clips on my Stories (I'm @stephstwogirls) of them together as they mixed and laughed and generally had lots of fun.  Afterwards, Sasha said it was 'the most fun siblings could have together that is not on a screen'. 

Sometimes, we just have to wait a while for those special moments.

To find out more about our experiences, please check out our 'About Us' page. If you are looking or more information on Pathological Demand Avoidance, why not try some of these, my most popular posts?

What is PDA (Pathological Demand Avoidance)?

Ten things you need to know about Pathological Demand Avoidance

Does my child have Pathological Demand Avoidance?

The difference between PDA and ODD

Strategies for PDA (Pathological Demand Avoidance)

Pathological Demand Avoidance: Strategies for Schools

Challenging Behaviour and PDA

Is Pathological Demand Avoidance real?

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  1. OMG! These sound amazing! Sounds like you all had a fab day too :) xx

    1. We did, it was one to remember even though it wouldn't seem 'special' to many! Thanks x


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