Butterless cupcakes.. Yes you heard right! There is no butter in these spongy cupcakes and yet they are delicious, soft and moist. Above all they are healthy! Enjoy these light cupcakes with a dollop of crème fraiche icing for that little bit of richness and creaminess.
Floral and nutty flavour combination
These butterless pistachio cupcakes are flavoured with subtle floral and spicy notes of cardamom. Nutty and floral is a great combination in baking. The cupcakes are so light when they come out of the oven, and ready for drizzling with hot syrup.
As the cake does not contain butter, you want to balance it by adding something creamy. Maybe not butter cream as it defeats the object. I have opted for a light crème fraiche icing that adds a touch of freshness to the cakes. Sweeten it with a little icing sugar and give it a bit of crunch by sprinkling with chopped pistachios. Best served with a cup of vanilla flavoured tea.
What ingredients do you use to make butterless pistachio cupcakes
Flour: Use self raising flour, or plain flour with 1 tsp baking powder.
Eggs: Large free range eggs. whisk until tripled in size and pale in colour. It is a method of incorporating air so the cake is spongy.
Pistachios: Shell the pistachios and grind them finely.
Sugar: Use caster or coconut sugar.
Vanilla extract: You can also use the seeds of a vanilla bean for this intense vanilla flavour.
Cardamoms: Deseeded and crushed.
Crème fraiche: Mix with icing sugar and vanilla extract.
Lemon: It adds a hint of freshness and to the cake.
Useful tips for spongy cupcakes
- Eggs: Use an electric mixer to whisk the eggs until tripled in size. You want a lot or air in the mixture to make the cake light and spongy.
- Fold in: The folding in method is best for mixing the dry ingredients into the egg mixture. Use a rubber spatula to cut the mixture down through the middle and lift the mixture up using the spatula, repeating the process until the flour has disappeared.
Butterless Pistachio and Cardamom Cupcakes
For the cupcakes
- 100 g self-raising flour
- 4 eggs
- 50 g pistachios finely ground
- 75 g sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 10 cardamom pods deseeded and crushed
- 100 g Crème fraiche
- Chopped pistachios for garnishing
For the drizzle sauce
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 cardamom pods deseeded and crushed
- Whisk the eggs: Preheat the oven to 170c. In a mixer add the eggs and vanilla and whisk on high for 5 minutes until the mixture has doubled in size. Slowly add the sugar while whisking for another 5 minutes. The mixture should now have tripled in size.
- Add dry ingredients: Sieve a third of the flour in the mixture and using a spatula carefully fold it in, making sure you don’t knock out too much air. Repeat until you’ve used all the flour.
- Add spices: Add the Pistachio and cardamom, and fold in very gently.
- Bake: Spoon the mixture in greased cupcake cases and bake for 15-20 minutes until a skewer inserted in the cake comes out clean.
- Make the drizzle: Meanwhile make the drizzle sauce. Add all the ingredients in a pan and bring to the boil. Simmer for 5 minutes until the sauce thickens.
- Add the sauce: As soon as the cupcakes come out of the oven brush the sauce on top so they soak it up. As the cupcake is spongy it will absorb the sauce quickly.
- Serve: Leave to cool. Serve with a good dollop of crème fraîche and a sprinkle of crushed pistachios.