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Knockando Cupcakes

Orange, Sultana and Knockando Malt Whisky Cupcakes

Knockando was the first distillery I visited, I was shown around by the impressive Innes Shaw, who knows all there is to know about whisky production. Set amoungst some of the most spectacular Speyside scenery and very close to the River Spey. The recipe inspiration comes from the aromas and flavours I find from this whisky. Sultanas from the sherry casks, almonds for that nuttiness. Knockando 12 year old is a lovely malt and one of my favourites. It's a great single malt for ladies, a great balance of flavours and aromas, and smooth and easy to drink.

Makes 12 cupcakes


200g caster sugar
2 large eggs
100g vegetable oil
140ml sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla paste
grated zest of an orange
230g plain flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
150g sultanas
150g chopped almonds
2 tablespoons Knockando 12 yo Single Malt Whisky

Preheat the the oven to 140C (fan) 150C / 300F / gas mark 2. Line a muffin tin with paper cases.

Soak the sultanas in the whisky for at least 3-4 hours but preferably overnight to allow them to become plump and absorb the whisky.
In a bowl place the sugar and eggs. Beat with an electric whisk for 3-5 minutes until light and fluffy. Very gradually add the oil, beating all the time, then slowly add the sour cream and vanilla paste beating after each addition.

Mix all the dry ingredients together and add to the egg and oil batter. Beat thoroughly, ensuring all is combined. Finally drain the sultanas and add them to the batter along with the chopped almonds. Keep the whisky as you will need it for the icing.

Fill the cupcake cases 2/3 full with the batter and bake in the centre of the oven for 25 minutes until they are well risen and firm to touch. You can test them by placing a skewer in to the centre and it should come out clean.

Remove them from the oven and place on a cooling tray. Allow to become completely cool.

Caramel and Knockando Whisky Icing with Chocolate Chips

70grm Butter
6 tablespoons milk
225grm soft brown sugar
250grm icing sugar
Knockando Single malt from the sultanas ( approx 1 dessert spoon)
1 tablespoon chocolate chips

Place the butter, milk and sugar in a pan and heat slowly bringing to the bowl. Boil for 1 minute and the add half the icing sugar, beating with a whisk to remove any lumps. Leave to cool for a few minutes and then add the rest of the icing sugar and the whisky and beat to the right consistancy. Decorate the cupcakes immediately and add the chocolate chips.

© copyright Penny Ellis