This week's recipe comes from that most excellent tome, 500 Cupcakes by Fergal Connolly. The recipe appealed to me because not only is it simple, but it yields cupcakes that are deliciously fragrant and zesty.

OK, so get ready to make Spiced Sour Cream Cupcakes! (Please note, the original recipe uses pecans instead of almonds and orange instead of lemon. I changed it because I didn't have those things lying around my kitchen today. Oh yeah, and I also added the mixed peel, just to give the recipe a bit more zing.)

For the base you will need:

190g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
175g brown sugar
175 ml sour cream
2 eggs
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp mixed spice
1 handful of sultanas
1/2 handful of chopped almonds
1/2 handful of mixed peel

For the topping you will need:

250g cream cheese
50g icing sugar
1 tbsp lemon zest
1 tbsp lemon juice

What you do:

1. Preheat your oven to 170 degrees C and line a cupcake tray with paper liners.

2. Sift the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and mixed spice into a large bowl and set aside.

3. Crack the eggs into another large bowl and add the sour cream. Whisk. Beat in the brown sugar.

4. Add the dry mixture a little at a time and mix until smooth. Fold in the sultanas, mixed peel and almonds. Mix well.

5. Spoon the batter into the cupcake liners. Bake for 20 minutes.
Put the cupcakes on a rack to cool.

6. To make the icing, mix the cream cheese, icing sugar, lemon zest and lemon juice until smooth.

7. Spread onto the completely cooled cupcakes. Dust with a sprinkling of cinnamon.

8. Go forth and find a random stranger to share your cupcakes with. Alternatively, scoff the lot on your own.

And the eighth random recipient is...


...You Young from South Korea!

I met You Young as I was walking in to town this morning. Even though it was pretty hot, I had decided that I was going to take my time selecting my random recipient. I walked around for quite a while because I wasn't really getting the right vibe from anyone. That is, until I came across You Young.

At first, I wasn't sure if she understood what I was raving on about, but it turns out she comprendez-ed moi just fine. I think that maybe she was just a bit surprised by my act of cupcake randomness (which, I have to admit is most people's initial reaction). When I explained my mission to her, she laughed and accepted my cupcake. We ended up chatting for a little while - it turns out that You Young is a newly graduated teacher back in Seoul, but is on a bit of a working holiday in Oz. By the way, she said she was looking for some volunteer teaching work , so if anyone reading this can help her out, just leave a comment on this blog.

You Young seemed like she really dug her random cupcake and that made me feel happy and at peace with the world. If you're reading this, You Young, thank you for being open to my random act of cupcake. I hope you enjoyed it and that you have a great time in Australia.

Until next time, my friends, keep smiling and most importantly, be random!

Chris Schwarz
20/4/2010 19:35:08

This recipe sounds tres delicious. Can't wait to taste it.
And You Young was a great choice for your random act of cupcake.
I'm not very observant, so you'll probably say they were there all the time, but are those awesomated blossoms on your home page new? One of the joys of getting old is that you become constantly surprised as your memory deserts you, rather like a goldfish in a bowl. Even if they're not, I guess I had the pleasure of discovering them again.

20/4/2010 20:44:21

No, you're not suffering from premature senile dementia. I just re-vamped my blog. Those blossoms are bitchin' hey?

21/4/2010 16:49:22

Hi. I'm Young.
Yesterday, I was very gloomy when I came across you in the street because I was thinking of my family and friends in Korea.But A cupcake you gave me made me happy.Thanks... and your cupcake was very delicious ^^

Chris Schwarz
21/4/2010 21:28:08

Very nice cuppies! Love the spices and cream cheese icing together.
Ralph whined and whined until I gave in and said he could have one of the cupcakes (I'm already regretting it as I only have 2 left-he'd better hurry up and eat it because I may not be able to stop). Just as I wrote that he said, 'I'd better go and eat mine before you grab it...' followed by, 'that is heaven, heaven in a cupcake!'
So I guess you get two thumbs up from us.
I hope this doesn't get to be a habit of his though. You know what it's like, first it's the whining, then it's the tantrums.

21/4/2010 21:36:32

Homie i will spare your site the indignity of becoming yet another arena for a cupcake/marital slinging match. Wonderful cup cake, juicily delicious.

24/4/2010 23:17:04

Out of all the cupcake blogs I've seen, yours really rock!I love your idea of giving away free cupcakes. It really makes a big difference to the people you meet.I'd love to guide <a href="">our</a> readers to your site if you won't mind.Just add your choice of <a href="">foodista widget</a> to the end of this post and it's all set, Thanks!


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