Walnut cupcakes with Honey and Chocolate

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I just discovered a new favourite!!! These are super delicious, and you can take my word for it!
I had this theme vision in my head, I made these sugar-paste flowers and ordered these cupcake case from the net, then I just knew this needs something beige, something nutty… This is how I made cupcakes with walnuts. One thing for sure, I’ll be making them again, and again, and again 🙂 Now I have to decide which should be my number 1: the Walnut cupcakes or the Carrot cupcakes (this one has Pecans)  Is it a coincidence that both are made with some sort of nuts? Don’t think so 🙂
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Ingredients:
1 cup flour
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs (room temperature)
200 g unsalted butter (room temperature)
5 tbsp walnuts (chopped)
2 tbsp honey
3 tbsp milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
100 g chocolate (chopped)
Frosting cream:
250 g Mascarpone, soft cream-cheese
5 tbsp powder sugar (icing sugar)
300 ml milk
40 g custard powder (or one sachet of Tejszínízű pudingpor)
1 tsp Schwartz Mixed Spice (optional but it definitely gives an exclusive character to the cream)
3 tbsp finely chopped walnuts (using an electric grinder)
salt
1.Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. My oven is an old gas oven and have absolutely no idea how many degrees are inside, I just switch it to gas mark 6-7, well somewhere in between.
Line your cupcake tin with the cupcake cases and put it aside.
2.Stir the flour, salt and baking powder together and set aside.
3.Beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla and cream together until you get a smooth mixture. Add the honey and chopped walnuts, give it a stir then add the flour and the milk and mix it but only until everything is combined. Finally stir in the chocolate.
I used milk chocolate, but you can use dark chocolate if you like, and also ready made chocolate chips will do.
Before chopping the walnuts I put them on a baking tray and roasted it for about 10 minutes. Be careful and don’t burn them! After cooling, chop the walnuts in pieces with a knife. It’s up to you how small or big you chop them, I like them at the size of the chocolate chips so it’s crunchy after baking.
4.Scoop the batter into the cupcake cases, filling only 3/4 way up. Bake for around 20 minutes. Do NOT open your oven in the first 10 minutes, but after that you can turn the baking tray if necessary (I need to do it in my oven). When they’re done, let them cool for about 5 minutes in the baking tin before taking out on a cooling rack. Let them cool completely before frosting.
To make the frosting cream, you have to prepare a thick custard cream and let it cool completely.
I used a Hungarian Dr.Oetker sachet of custard which is called “Tejszínízű pudingpor” (this is for my Hungarian readers :-), this contain 40 g of custard powder. You can easily replace this with vanilla custard, I don’t think it makes any difference.
So, stir the 40 g (must be about 2 tbsp) of custard powder with 3 tbsp of icing sugar, add 300 ml of milk and bring it to boil until you get a thick custard cream. Let it cool completely.
In a mixing bowl cream together the Mascarpone cream cheese and 2 tbsp of icing sugar, add the fine walnuts and the cold custard cream gradually. In the end stir in about 1 tsp of Mixed Spice and -call me crazy but throw in a pinch of salt, it only makes it better!
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This spice mix I used was a last minute idea! This jar contains: Cassia, Coriander Seed, Caraway, Nutmeg, Ginger, Cloves. Well, let me tell you that I have no clue what Cassia is… and if you don’t have it, don’t worry, you can use a little ground nutmeg or cinnamon, or nothing at all. I used about 1 tsp of the whole spice mix, but you should adjust this to your taste really, depending on how strong you want it to taste. Sprinkle a little, stir in, have a taste, then sprinkle some more if you feel like it, the 1 tsp is just approximate. And this applies on the sugar as well. The sugar + honey will give a relatively sweet result (not too sweet though and definitely very delicious!) so you might want to consider using less sugar then 1 cup.
Also, I want to mention that I always use whole and full fat products, like whole milk, and French butter, and large eggs, original Mascarpone, etc. so no light products, which might make a difference in the end, but maybe not.
As a garnish for these walnut cupcakes you can simply use leftover walnut pieces, or chocolate.
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I used the Silver Spoon brand Easy Melt dark chocolate to make the fragile chocolate flowers.
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