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A Few of My Favourite Things!

Friday, September 22, 2006

Wattleseed Pecan-Crumble Espresso Cupcakes

I had recently come across some wattleseed at my not-so-local supermarket. This bushfood which is harvested as a seed from a plant member of the Acacia species, was originally used by Australian Aboriginines as a valuable, nutritious food source. They ate it raw, dried or incorporated it into their baking. Roasted and ground, wattleseed has a nutty flavour with coffee undertones.

As I don't often come across native foods, unless it's sold as a speciality item at markets, I wanted to make something with it. I decided on cupcakes and wanted to pair it somehow with pecans because I think the flavours match really well. In the end, I made a pecan crumble to sprinkle on top and for the surprise part, I would fill the cupcakes with an espresso frosting to enhance the coffee flavour.

I used a basic cupcake recipe from Nigella's How to be a Domestic Goddess and added about 2 tablespoons of this native spice. Chopped up pecans mixed with some raw sugar on top then into the oven they went. Once cooled, I made an espresso then used it to mix some icing sugar into a paste. This went into a piping bag with a sharp nozzle and was piped in through the base of the cupcakes. This is not a particularly fluffy cupcake so it took some effort to get the icing in. If you look carefully at the photo, you will see that I didn't end up with much of the frosting inside but this turned out quite well because it wasn't overly sweet.

These babies were really good. An unusual flavour that reminds you of coffee but not quite as strong as coffee/espresso cupcakes. Can anyone enlighten me on why my cupcakes have a little hump in the centre though? I've never had this happen before.

Head over to Alanna's for all the surprises in month's Sugar High Friday round-up!

Wattleseed Pecan-Crumble Espresso Cupcakes

125g SR flour, 125g butter, 125g sugar, 2 large eggs, 1 tsp vanilla extract, 1 tsp baking powder, 2 tablespoons wattleseed, 2-3 tablespoons milk. Crumble: chopped pecans and a sprinkle of raw sugar. Frosting: Espresso and icing sugar

  1. Cream butter and sugar, then add eggs and vanilla extract
  2. Add dry ingredients and mix.
  3. Add milk to form a batter with a 'soft dropping' consistency
  4. Spoon into muffin tin, sprinkle pecan/sugar mixture on top and bake at 200C for 20 minutes.
  5. Mix the espresso and icing sugar into smooth paste and pipe into middle of cupcakes through base

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  • Those are very cute! As for the lump - I'm taking a guess here and saying that it was due to uneven heat distribution. The only reason I say that is because I use to have the same thing happen with my metal mini-muffin tray, but since switching to a silicone mould, have been completely lump-free :D

    By Anonymous Ellie, at Fri Sep 22, 09:22:00 pm AEST  

  • Thank you for visiting my site and for teaching about wattleseed. I had no idea. That's what I love about blogging: continuing education.
    On to read some more of your entries, loving it!

    By Blogger Helene, at Sat Sep 23, 09:04:00 am AEST  

  • Just wondering where you happened across some wattleseed. I've been looking for some but to no avail.

    By Blogger jenjen, at Sat Sep 23, 08:43:00 pm AEST  

  • Ellie: I have a mini silicone mould but will have to get one for larger cupcakes/muffins. I normally bake with a cupcake liner made of aluminium/paper and wonder if this is why I haven't had this happen before? Also, I have a fan-forced oven so doesn't that distribute heat more evenly?

    Helene: I only just learnt about wattleseed too, but yes I find that great about blogging too. Glad you are enjoying the reading!

    Jen: Have now seen them both in supermarkets (Safeway & IGA) and also delis. I'm happy to sen some up to you - drop me an email if you don't have any further luck.

    By Blogger cin, at Sun Sep 24, 06:56:00 am AEST  

  • Ha! I've got some wattleseed! Just haven't known what to do with it ...

    Thanks, Cindy, for playing along with Surprise Inside, the entries are all very interesting, look the round-up later today!

    By Blogger Alanna, at Sun Sep 24, 11:28:00 pm AEST  

  • Thanks for the introduction to wattleseed. I love the name of those little guys and I'm so intrigued by their flavor. I have no idea if they are available anywhere around LA but will definitely be on the lookout!

    By Blogger geneve, at Mon Sep 25, 07:26:00 am AEST  

  • Reading food blogs is so informative. I've never heard of wattleseed but it sounds like a delicious addition to these cupcakes.

    By Anonymous Julie, at Mon Sep 25, 11:33:00 pm AEST  

  • Hrm, the fan-forced thing should help with heat distribution...in which case, I have no clue why your cupcakes indulged in lumpy behaviour :(

    By Anonymous Ellie, at Tue Sep 26, 06:20:00 am AEST  

  • Never heard before about wattleseed. Very interesting.

    My cupcakes and muffins always have humps. I thought it's normal. ;-)

    By Anonymous zorra, at Tue Sep 26, 07:12:00 pm AEST  

  • hi i stumbled upon your blog. lovely food pics u have here :) im a foodie myself too and its great to know likeminded ppl. take care!

    By Anonymous evan, at Tue Sep 26, 07:15:00 pm AEST  

  • oeeh, very interesting! I love it!
    they look so delicious, very nice combination of flavours...
    great SHF entry! =)

    By Blogger Julia, at Wed Sep 27, 02:13:00 am AEST  

  • These look and sound so good--I'm going to be searching for wattleseed, I can feel it!

    By Blogger Josie, at Wed Sep 27, 06:38:00 am AEST  

  • I love trying new flavours, although I've never had wattleseed.

    By Blogger Brilynn, at Wed Sep 27, 08:06:00 am AEST  

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    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Fri Sep 29, 05:58:00 am AEST  

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    By Blogger Bonnie Loves Cats =^..^=, at Sat Sep 30, 10:24:00 am AEST  

  • Hey Cindy,

    Sounds great! I love how creative you were making these.

    I tried a wattleseed and chocolate cake when I went to the Yarra Valley recently, and I really liked it. Must keep an eye out for some wattleseed..

    xox Sarah

    By Blogger Sarah, at Fri Oct 06, 02:16:00 pm AEST  

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    By Blogger Bharat Book Bureau, at Mon Apr 06, 04:01:00 pm AEST  

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