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Poor relation is rich picking; Tasty Scottish brambles are a national treasure that will add depth to any bake.

Byline: Julie Scrumptious

One of the first columns I did featured Hokey Pokey cupcakes and, despite my general dislike for cupcakes, they tasted amazing.

So often cupcakes are just a triumph of tasteless, sugary frosting on industrial-made leaden sponge. They must have a wow factor about the sponge for me to be interested.

The Hokey Pokey ones had a delicious honeycomb taste, albeit they were tooth-achingly sweet.

This week's recipe, as promised, features our lovely Scottish soft fruits again. Brambles are the poor relations of the soft fruit world with most people only having memories of picking them to make jelly or jam.

They don't taste outstanding on their own but once cooked are deeply delicious. Adding them to most fruit crumbles only improves the already hallowed dish.

This recipe caught my eye purely because of the lovely colours and the promise of a tasty, tangy chocolate sponge too.

I normally reject any cake with 'red velvet' in the name since it has come to mean nothing more than red food colouring, so what's really the point? But these cupcakes are tasty and decadent enough to earn the name.

bramble. velvet cupcakes Makes about 12 INGREDIENTS 300g brambles, plus extra to decorate 100g butter 100g chocolate, broken up 225g self-raising flour 175g caster sugar 2 tbsp cocoa 2 large eggs, lightly beaten ICING 100g very soft butter 250g icing sugar METHOD 1 Heat oven to 180/160C fan/gas 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tin with paper cases. Boil the kettle.

Roughly crush half the brambles with a fork 2 Gently melt the chocolate and butter in a pan 3 In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients and a pinch of salt 4 5 Mix the melted butter mixture, the crushed brambles and the eggs into the dry ingredients and add 100ml of water from the kettle. Mix well. It's quite a wet cake batter.

6 Divide between the paper cases and bake for 15-20 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely. I find it easier to decorate cupcakes while they are still in the tin.

7 Beat the remaining 150g of brambles to a puree and press through a sieve so you have a rich, purple juice.

8 Beat the butter and icing sugar together and add trickles of the bramble juice until you have a good purple colour. You may not need all of it.

Spread the icing thickly onto the cakes and top with a 9

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Article Type:Recipe
Date:Aug 25, 2019
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