Soft, fluffy, light, spongy and an absolute delight! Come, meet the Hokkaido Cupcakes: it’s origin I know not of, and apparently has got nothing to do with Hokkaido, Japan, yet is a popular find in Asia. Texture-wise, it is very much like the chiffon cake, except this comes in a cup.
According to my 5 year old daughter, Spud, cupcakes always taste better when they are in rainbow colours.What’s a Mom supposed to do but to agree with her brilliant suggestion! She got to pick the flavours too, and with a choice of Vanilla, Chocolate, Lychee and Passion Fruit, Spud decided on Passion Fruit. I was, actually gunning for chocolate. Dammit.
So what’s in a Hokkaido Cupcake you ask? Well, pretty much the same as the Chiffon, but only with half the quantity of eggs used. They all came out of the oven tall and fluffed up, but the moment you take them out of the oven, they sink a little and the top went wrinkly. Oh well! It’s the texture and taste that count. Besides, you can always top it up with frosting to cover up the ugly, wrinkly tops.
This is one of those cakes that is fun to bake with the kids. I’ve got my little kitchen helpers mucking about with this one. Never mind that they over-decorated their cakes with too much sugar or toppled the sugary stuff all over the table and the floor, but it was really such a joy to see them having so much fun with frosting and sugary decorations.
Oh yes! They had their cakes and ate them too, all the while bursting with uncontrollable laughter. Funny little critters.
Hokkaido Cup Cakes
Soft, spongy, light and fluffy easy to make chiffon cupcake!
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar (use to stabilise whipping of egg whites and allow them to reach maximum volume)
Colouring: I used blue, red, orange
Make sure the eggs are at room temperature. Separate the eggs and place the whites in one bowl and the yolks in another.
Preheat the oven to 170 degrees C and get the cups of your choice ready!
In the bowl of your electric mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, place the flour, sugar (minus 1.5 tbsp of sugar), baking powder, and salt. Beat until combined.
Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and add the egg yolks, oil, milk and passion fruit extract. Beat about one minute or until smooth.
Get ready empty bowls to separate the batter for different colouring.
In a separate bowl, with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and continue to beat until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in the remaining 1.5 tablespoons of sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.
Apportion the whisked egg whites into the batter equally into 3. Add drops of colouring to each of the bowl.
With a large rubber spatula, gently fold the egg whites into the batter just until blended (being careful not to deflate the batter).
To layer, pour the mixed batter (with egg whites folded in) one colour on top of the other until all the batter is used up in each of the cups
Bake for about 30-35 minutes, or until a wooden skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. (When lightly pressed the cake will spring back).
The cake will sink when you take it out of the oven. Don't panic! Apparently, that happens. (But if you have any tricks to prevent the top from sinking, let me know!)