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Date and Banana Cupcakes

Don't be fooled by the name. This is far from a healthy alternative.

3 1/2 cups plain flour
2 teaspoons bicarbonate soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch all spice
250g softened unsalted butter
3 cups castor sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk
2 cups mashed bananas
1/2 cup dates, chopped

Preheat oven to 170C. Line muffin trays with 24 cupcake liners.

Sift together the flour, bicarb, salt, cinnamon and spice.

In a separate bowl, cream the butter for 1-2 minutes. Add the sugar a third at a time, beating for 2 minutes after each addition. After the last addition, beat until the mixture is light and fluffy and the sugar is dissolved.

Add the eggs one at a time, beating for 1 minute after each addition or until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla extract and beat until combined.

Add a third of the flour mixture to the creamed mixture and beat on a low speed until combined. Add half of the butter milk And half of the banana and beat until well combined. Repeat this. Add the remaining third of the flour mixture and beat until thoroughly combined. Don't over beat. Add the dates and stir through.

Spoon the mixture into the cupcake pans, filling about 3/4 full. Bake for 20 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.


4 cups icing sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup milk
100g butter
2 tablespoons good quality cocoa powder

Cream the butter for 1-2 minute. Add the milk, vanilla extract and half the sifted icing sugar, best for at least 3 minutes or until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add milk if dry or icing sugar is too runny.

Stir in the cocoa sugar.

Apply the frosting.

Decorate as per the picture above. Using chocolate coated nuts and drizzle with melted white chocolate.