Fairy Cakes

I am convinced there are faeries residing in my gardens ~ they leave their evidence here and there. But I had never known the pleasure of 'Fairy Cakes' until Nigella Lawson introduced them to me.

I adore these little cakes, and they can be decorated in any way you like.

In the spring, I like to decorate them using edible, organic flowers from the garden.
Of course you don't have to eat the flowers, but you may if you wish, and I love their fresh look.
Pansy and Viola blossoms arrive in a wide array of colors, I believe they are my favorites.

But others add a bright variety ~

Still, I seem to be drawn to the blues and purples.

These are dense little cakes, with flat tops, unlike the cupcakes I knew as a child ~

The flat tops with wide surface area, spread with soft Royal Icing make them perfect for decorating. Added bonus, the batter is mixed in a food processor, or may be mixed by hand.

Fairy Cakes~

Recipe makes 12 cupcakes

Adapted from Nigella Lawson's cookbook "How to be a Domestic Goddess"

1/2 cup butter (unsalted if you wish), softened
7 tablespoons sugar
2 large eggs
3/4 cups self-rising cake flour, or ~

ALTERNATELY~ If you want to use regular (non-self rising) All Purpose flour, or Cake Flour then add a scant 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, with a scant 1 teaspoon baking powder.
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-3 tablespoons milk

1 cup powdered (confectioner's) sugar
1 egg white
3-4 drops lemon juice
food coloring


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. (I set my oven to 375-degrees (F)

Line a 12 cup muffin tin with baking cups.
Put all the ingredients except for the milk into a food processor and blend until smooth. Pulse while adding the milk down the funnel to make for a soft consistency.

Nigella commented that this will not seem like enough batter for 12 cupcakes but surprisingly, it is. Scrape the processor bowl thoroughly and divide equally into the 12 paper cups.

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until they are golden on top.
Cool on a wire rack, but remove from the tin as soon as possible.

Before you decorate, slice off any mounded tops so you have a flat surface to decorate. (Sometimes the cupcakes form humps or peaks as they bake, I use a small serrated knife to remove the mounded tops ~ baker's treat!)

Mix the sugar, egg white and lemon juice in a small bowl until smooth and creamy, it should have the consistency of heavy cream. Tint with a small amount of food coloring or leave white.

If desired, divide the large batch into smaller portions to tint each one a different color.

Use your imagination to decorate any way you like!


  1. stunningly pretty as always!

  2. Jain, Even reading about your temps make me perspire! It's been (too) warm here as well but today was the first day that we didn't break 90* in a long time.

    I pulled out almost all of the pansies and violas today, which reminded me of spring, and making these Fairy Cakes. I'm always sad to see the spring pansies go. :(

  3. A garden upon a plate:)

    So pretty Mary..
    I pulled tons today too..even my hair.:)

  4. LOL, Monique :)

    GORGEOUS cupcakes, Mary! I want one or two!

  5. Mary, I came to your blog at this early hour for a dose of daily beauty! Timely too...I just pulled my pansies. I adore pansies.

  6. Mme. Monique ~ Il est trop drôle! Beaucoup d'entre nous de nettoyer le jardin à la fois ~ (Et vous savez que j'ai été déchirer mes cheveux récemment, aussi.):) C'est toujours un plaisir de lire vos commentaires, mon ami. J'adore votre humour.

    Carol, I love when you come by to visit! It's always so nice to 'see' you here. :)

    *waving* Hi to you Debbie! I am waiting for the opportunity to make your specialty cake. I'm so thrilled you were able to crack the recipe. Greatful kudos to you, my friend!

  7. Okay you... these are so freakin gorgeous I have heart palpitations each time I come back and sneek a peek. Holy mother of pearl I simply MUST make these... right away... or my baking life will be incomplete.

    Have a delicious day!

  8. em, you make me laugh! "Holy mother of pearl" !!! lol!

    Everyone who is reading along, please do yourself a favor and go to em's blog ~ be prepared to be BLOWN away!

    em is truly talented and a WONDERFUL inspiraton. I'm an em 'wanna be'!

  9. The fairy cakes really have an air of fairy looks. The ribbon-flowery decoration makes them look awesomely beautiful! I will definitely try them with icing for the new year treat to my family. Thank you so much for sharing.


Thank you for your comments, friends ~ they make my day!

A Sampling of my food . . .


 Subscribe in a reader...or

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner