Simple, light and classic: these are so easy to make but unfailingly delicious.

This recipe is an extract from Guilt-Free Baking by Gee Charman.

Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 18 minutes

Ingredients:MattRussell_Victoria_Sponge_Cupcakes_014
Makes 12 cupcakes (12 servings)
For the sponge cupcakes:
low-calorie cooking oil spray, for greasing (optional)
250g/9oz/2 cups self-raising flour
2 tsp baking powder
150g/5½oz tinned pears in natural juice, drained
3 tbsp sunflower oil
150g/5½oz/⅔ cup caster sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
For the strawberry filling:
200g/7oz/1⅓ cups strawberries
6 tbsp low-sugar strawberry jam
1 tbsp icing sugar, sifted

Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas 4 and line a muffin tin with paper cases or lightly spray the sections of a 12-hole loose-based mini sandwich tin with low-calorie cooking oil spray.
  • Mix together the flour and baking powder in a large bowl. Put the pears in a blender and blend to a purée. In a separate bowl, beat together the oil, caster sugar, eggs and vanilla extract, then add the pear purée and mix well.
  • Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix together well.
  • Spoon the mixture into the prepared muffin tin, filling the sections three-quarters full.
  • Bake for 15–18 minutes until golden brown, well risen and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
  • Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  • Remove the paper cases, if necessary, and cut the cakes in half horizontally. If you like, reserve 6 strawberries for decoration, then hull and thinly slice the remainder.
  • Spread a little of the jam over one half of each of the cut cakes, then top with a few strawberry slices.
  • Replace the top of each cake and dust lightly with icing sugar.
  • Cut the reserved strawberries, if using, in half, then make 3 cuts in each half up to the stalk but not going through it completely, then fan them out and put one on top of each cake to serve.

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Gee Charman
Guilt-Free Baking
Available from Nourish in August 2015

 

 

 

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