So this week I decided that pineapple cupcakes might be nice. According to the recipe, which comes from Fergal Connolly's 500 Cupcakes (again), these go down a treat with a cuppa tea. The base recipe is from the book, but I've adapted the icing.

For the cupcakes you will need:
225g softened unsalted butter
225g caster sugar
225g SR flour
1tsp baking powder
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
175g drained crushed pineapple

For the icing you will need:
250g cream cheese
100g icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
4 tbsp drained crushed pineapple

1. Preheat the oven to 175 degrees C. Line the cupcake trays with paper cases.

2. In a large bowl, combine all the cupcake ingredients except for the pineapple. Use electric beaters to get the batter nice and fluffy.

3. Add the pineapple and stir in.

4. Spoon the batter into the cupcake cases and bake for 20 minutes. Put the cupcakes on a rack to cool.

5. Put all of the icing ingredients in a bowl except for the pineapple and mix with electric beaters. Then add the pineapple.

6. When the cupcakes are cool, spread the icing onto each one.

Makes 24-28 cupcakes.
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Before...
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...and after.
So after I had conducted my quality control procedures, I went for a random stroll down my street in search of some random cupcake recipients.

After about 100 metres, I came across a young fellow walking in the opposite direction. He was wearing aviator sunnies and had a super well-pressed shirt and was wired for sound, but without the rollerskates like in the Cliff Richard video. I thought I'd give him a go. So I attracted his attention and explained how I was writing a blog about giving cupcakes away to random strangers and would he like a cupcake? He smiled and said no thanks and kept walking.

My first random rejection! It was a historic moment, that's for sure, but as I kept trudging down the road it also got me thinking about this little venture of mine. I mean, how would I react if some random stranger stopped me in the street and offered me something to eat? To tell the truth, I'd probably say no, too.

Which is why I take my hats off to people like Lisa, last week's random recipient. There she was at the cinema, minding her own beeswax, waiting to go in to watch Alice in Wonderland, when I rocked up and offered her random baked goods. Actually, I wonder if the thought ever crossed her mind that she was a bit like Alice in the movie, what with being asked to eat random cakes and all. Truly, to accept a random cupcake from a stranger is much more of a courageous act than people might be willing to acknowledge.

Anyway, while I was thinking these thoughts, I came across a group of five women. I told them about my blog and offered them the cupcakes. Their initial reaction was kind of along the lines of: There's nothing evil in these cupcakes, is there? (I don't think they were referring to calories.) And a fair question it was too, given what I'd been thinking about just moments earlier. After I reassured them that, no, the cupcakes weren't deadly, they completely entered into the spirit of the thing, even agreeing to have their photo taken for this blog. So say hello to my second lovely random recipients Kelly, Abbey, Sarah, Jenny and Leanne.
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They're students studying in the area of health and are from down south. It turns out that they're studying where my husband works. Forget about six degrees of separation, this town operates on about 1 point five.

OK, so just another random thought: I feel kind of bad that they only had two cupcakes to share between five people, so ladies, if you're reading this and you liked the cupcakes, just pop in to see the IT guy (my hubby) tomorrow and he'll give you some more.
 
Welcome to Random Acts of Cupcake, where I make a different cupcake each week, give a cupcake away to a random stranger and then blog about it.

So this week's cupcake is Chocolate and Beetroot. I actually made these cupcakes a few days ago, but they're still really moist and yummy. Here's the recipe:

500g fresh beetroots
250g SR flour
2 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
2 eggs
75 ml vegetable oil
75 ml buttermilk

1. Steam the beetroot for 50 minutes, until tender. Drain and rinse under cold water. When they're cool enough, peel the skin off. Put the beetroots in a food processor and blend until mushy.

2. Pre-heat the oven to 175 degrees C. Line the cupcake tins with paper cases.

3. In a bowl, combine the flour, cocoa, sugar and baking powder.

4. In another bigger bowl, beat the eggs, oil and buttermilk. Add the beetroot and mix in well. Then add the dry ingredients and stir until everything is mixed in.

5. Spoon the batter into the cupcake cases, filling about 2/3 of each case. Bake for 20 minutes. Put on a rack to cool.

(Makes about 12-16 cupcakes)

Technically speaking, these are supposed to be muffins (I got the recipe from Fergal Connolly's book 500 Cupcakes), but I've decided to call them cupcakes.Which raises the question, what's the difference?

Anyway, it's time to go out and practise some random acts of cupcake! Wish me luck!
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So I'm back! I went to the cinema to see Alice in Wonderland with my friend, Kathleen. As soon as I walked into the foyer, I was anxiously scoping the place out for my first random acts of cupcake recipient. After about a nano-second of fretting, I decided on a young woman sitting by herself who looked open-minded and friendly (I didn't want to get rejected on my first random act, after all).

So I after I bought my ticket, I approached my random recipient and the encounter went sort of like this:

Me:                Um. Hello there. Do you like cupcakes?
Recipient:    (A bit uncertainly). Uh...yeah. Who doesn't?
Me:                Well in that case, I was wondering if you would be
                      interested in participating in a
social experiment I'm 
                      conducting?

Recipient:    Um...
Me:               Basically, I make a different kind of cupcake
                     each week and then I give them away to a
                     random stranger. It's for my blog. Would you
                     like one? (whipping out a box of cupcakes)
Recipient:   Sweet! What kind are they?
Me:               Chocolate and beetroot.
Recipient:    Oooh, they're warm! Did you just bake these?
Me:                Um, no. It's just that they've been in the car
                      for a bit. But anyway....

Unfortunately, I was so excited that my first random act of cupcake had been well-received that I didn't find out much more about Lisa, apart from the fact that she was going to watch the same session of Alice in Wonderland as me and was waiting for her friends. But I did ask if I could take her photo and she very kindly obliged. Here is Lisa, my very first random acts of cupcake recipient!
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