Cranberry and Pistachio cupcakes

Another slight variation on a basic buttercake recipe.  With Christmas just around the corner, more red and green!  You should get around 9 to 10 cupcakes.

Cranberry and pistachio cupcakes

Cranberry and pistachio cupcakes


125 grams butter;

1/2 cup caster sugar;

1 egg, beaten;

1 1/2 cups sr flour (I used gluten free which does cause the cake to ‘crack’ more than regular flour, but it was still ok and now suitable for the coeliac in my house);

Up to 1 cup of cream – add to mixture a bit at a time until the batter is thick and of a spoonable consistency;

1/4 cup dried cranberries;

1/4 cup roughly chopped pistachios.

Cream the butter and sugar, gradually add the beaten egg, mixing all the time.  Add cranberries and pistachios and mix.  Add flour and cream alternately.

Pour into cupcake moulds or papers, and bake in a 170 C fan forced oven (or 180 regular) for about 20 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean.  Let it cool in the tin for a few minutes before putting on a rack to cool.

Spider Cupcakes for Halloween

Once again, same problem as with the Tiger Cupcakes, all the elements are gluten free except for the liquorice legs.  My instructions to my husband were:

“yes, you can eat the spider cakes, but you have to pick the legs off first”.  I am so funny. (In my own head anyway).

If you look closely you can see they are redback spiders.

Spider cupcakes for Halloween

Spider cupcakes for Halloween


125g butter

1/2 cup caster sugar

2 eggs, beaten

1/2 cup liquid, made up of whatever juice you get from an orange, then top up the rest with  milk

1 & 1/2 cups gluten free self raising flour



125g butter

1 & 1/2 cups gluten free icing sugar (sometimes icing sugar mixture contains starches, so check the pack)

2 tbsp milk

Green food colouring

12 chocolate coated almonds

12 chocolate coated peanuts

Liquorice  straps

Red icing pen to make the red stripes


Preheat the oven to 160 Celcius fan forced, or 180 if not.

Cream the butter and sugar for the cake, beat in the eggs one at a time and mix well to prevent curdling.  Add the liquid and flour alternately.  When you have a nice smooth batter, spoon into 12 hole muffin tin or into big cupcake papers.  Bake for about 15 – 20 minutes – cakes should spring back when you touch them lightly.  Remove from oven.  Allow to cool in pan for a few minutes, then remove to a wire rack.  Allow to cool completely before icing.


Cream the butter and icing sugar together and beat until light and fluffy.  Add milk, and the food colouring a few drops at a time until you get the colour you like.

Place chocolate coated nuts to make the body and head.  For the liquorice, I used a fish filleting knife as it was the thinnest blade I have.  Cut some liquorice straps into leg pieces and stick on.  Don’t forget you need 8 legs for each spider.  Paint a red stripe at the rear of the body of the spider.