Recipe: Bakewell Cherry Cupcakes by Luis Troyano

Luis' Bakewell cupcakes.

Luis' Bakewell cupcakes. - Credit: Archant

Made from lemon and almond flavoured sponge with a raspberry jam centre, topped with an amaretto-flavoured icing, these cupcakes are a fun alternative to the traditional Bakewell Tart

Luis Troyano

Luis Troyano - Credit: Archant

These little cakes pay homage to the Cherry Bakewell, a tart that is thought to originate in Bakewell in Derbyshire in the mid-1800s. The Cherry Bakewell had an almond-flavoured fondant topping with a single half glacé cherry on top. These cupcakes are made from lemon- and almond-flavoured sponge with a raspberry jam centre, topped with an amaretto-flavoured icing. If you want to make them for children, replace the liqueur with an extra teaspoon of almond extract and lemon juice. If you are low on time, it’s fine to use good-quality shop-bought raspberry jam. Take a little time when icing them to fill them all consistently and gently press a whole glacé cherry bang in the centre. I always take a box of these when going to visit friends or need to make an entrance. They never fail to impress on all levels!

Makes 12

Time required: 30 minutes preparation and 30 minutes to ice and decorate

Baking time: 20–25 minutes, plus cooling

Optimum oven position and setting: below centre and fan

Essential equipment:

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• A 12-hole muffin tin

• 12 greaseproof paper muffin cases.

• A cupcake corer will cut out a neat well for the jam, but if you don’t have one, carefully use a small, sharp knife instead.


• 150g soft unsalted butter

• 150g caster sugar

• 100g self-raising flour

• 120g ground almonds

• 3 medium eggs

• 1 tsp baking powder

• finely grated zest of 1 unwaxed lemon

• 1 tsp almond extract

• 1 tbsp milk

For the filling

• raspberry jam made with 100g fresh raspberries and

1 tbsp lemon juice, or use 150g shop-bought jam

For the icing

• 400g icing sugar

• 1 tsp almond extract

• 2 tbsp amaretto liqueur

• juice of 1 lemon, strained (use the lemon that was zested earlier)

• 12 glacé cherries – use different colours for the wow factor


1. Preheat the oven to 160°C fan/180°C/320°F/gas 4.

2. Place a muffin case in each hole of your muffin tin.

3. Cream together the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy; this takes about five minutes in a kitchen mixer fitted with a paddle, or a little longer with a hand mixer.

4. Add the flour, almonds, eggs, baking powder, lemon zest, almond extract and milk, and mix well until combined.

5. Next, I put the cake mixture into a disposable piping bag, cut the end off the piping bag and pipe the mixture into each muffin case. Don’t fill each case more than halfway – we want the sponge to rise but leave room at the top of the case to hold a good quantity of icing later on. Bake for 20–25 minutes until the tops are firm and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out completely clean.

6. Remove the cakes from the oven, take them out of the tin and immediately place them on a wire rack to cool.

7. Once completely cooled, use a cupcake corer to remove a piece of sponge from the centre of each cake. Fill the hole with 1 teaspoon of jam and push the core back in.

8. To make the icing, place the icing sugar, almond extract and amaretto in a bowl. Add the lemon juice a little at a time and stir until you have a thick, smooth, glossy icing. Add a few drops of water if you don’t have enough lemon juice to achieve the right consistency.

9. Spoon some icing on the top of each cake, until it’s perfectly level with the top of the case, and place a whole glacé cherry in the middle of each one. Take your time here and make them all look the same for a stunning set of cupcakes. Leave the icing to set for a couple of hours or overnight before enjoying.

Luis’ book Bake it Great is out now and is published by Pavilion.