Raspberry Cupcakes, Gluten Free

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Gluten free flour is known for making cakes much denser, so in this recipe I have substituted the butter for Stork margarine in order to get a lighter and airier texture.

(makes 12)

Ingredients:
115g Stork margarine (tub)
115g castor sugar
2 eggs
140g gluten free plain flour (I used Doves Farm)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
dash of milk
15g freeze dried raspberries

Icing:
85g Stork margarine (tub)
230g sieved icing sugar
1 tablespoon milk
pink food colouring
edible flowers (optional)

Method:

1. Put all the ingredients into a bowl and beat together until smooth.

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2. Place a heaped tablespoon of mixture into each cupcake case. Bake in a preheated oven at 180ºc for 20 minutes or until golden brown and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. (For an Aga, about 10 minutes in the roasting oven with the cold shelf on the 2nd set of runners).

cooking cupc

3. Cool on wire tray.
 cooling cupc
4. Combine the icing ingredients and mix until smooth. Add the food colouring to your preference (I use a toothpick for this). Alternatively separate the icing into separate bowls to create different colours or add cocoa powder to the icing instead of food colouring to create raspberry and chocolate cupcakes.

5. Spoon the icing into a piping bag and starting at the edge, pipe in a circular motion into the centre of the cupcake. Decorate as desired. Edible flower petals can make it look extra special.

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Enjoy!
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Amalfi Coast, Italy

The Amalfi Coast in Southern Italy is a truly breathtaking place to visit, a destination from which you will never want to return. With spectacular coastal scenery and gorgeous food it is of no surprise that this is a popular tourist destination.

Coastline
Coastline

The town of Amalfi itself, famed for its lemons and limoncello, is a fantastic place to visit due to its medieval architecture, quaint shops and of course the Amalfi Cathedral, dating back to the 11th century. The steps leading up to its entrance overlook the ‘Piazza Duomo’, the heart of Amalfi, and a great place to buy a gelato and enjoy the buzz of this town.

Buffalo mozzarella from Ristorante Torre del Saracino
Buffalo mozzarella from Ristorante Torre del Saracino

Another place to visit is the town of Ravello, situated just above the Amalfi coast. If I had to recommend one attraction here, it would be the Villa Rufolo with its stunning gardens overlooking the coast below. If you plan to visit here in summer months, my tip would be to try and get tickets to one of the many concerts that take place in the gardens, a perfect way to while away a balmy evening.

Positano
Positano

The town of Positano is again, a beautiful place to visit. Although it does attract tourists, it certainly has a more traditional Italian feel than the bigger towns like Amalfi. It is the perfect place for a stroll and to browse through the shops, winding their way down to the water front. A delightful place to stop for lunch is in the gardens of the Hotel Palazzo Murat. This hotel was previously a monastery and although in the centre of Positano, upon entering the gardens, the noise of the surrounding streets disappears. This is a perfect place on a hot day with the trees providing a shady, cool place to sit. If you are looking for somewhere lavish to stay, book a room at the nearby ‘Il san Pietro di Positano’. This Relais & Chateaux hotel is not only beautiful, but can also boast of some of the best food in the area.

Waters surrounding Capri
Waters surrounding Capri

If luxury is what you are after, the place to head is the island of Capri where lavish boutiques are in abundance. This is a fantastic place for a day trip and the waters off this island are the colour of turquoise, a place to take a dip amongst the super yachts surrounding Capri. If you are looking to treat yourself, a trip to the newly opened restaurant ‘Mamá’ is certainly in order. This is the second restaurant of the two star Michelin chef, Genarro Esposito, and is a restaurant that you will dream about long after you have left, due to its delectably fresh food that captures Italy in a mouthful.