Preheat the oven to 170*C.
Line two 12 hole cupcake tins with cupcake cases and put aside.
VEGAN BISCUIT BASE
1. Using a food processor or a sandwich bag and a rolling pin, blend/ bash the digestive biscuits to a fine crumb and transfer to a bowl.
2. Melt 50g of 'butter', once melted pour into the crushed biscuits along with the golden syrup. Mix until all biscuits have been coated.
3. Scoop roughly a tablespoon of the mix into each cupcake case and push down firmly to make a flat and compact base.
VEGAN CHOCOLATE SPONGE
1. To make the sponge start by whisking together the non dairy milk and apple cider vinegar in a jug and set aside for later. This will thicken and create our “buttermilk” type substitute.
2. In a freestanding mixer beat the vegan butter and sugar for a few minutes until light and fluffy.
In a separate bowl sift the dry ingredients together: flour, bicarbonate of soda, salt and cocoa. Whisk the coffee granules into the sifted dry ingredients.
3. The next step is to alternate adding our wet “buttermilk” (non dairy milk and apple cider vinegar) and dry ingredients to the butter, sugar mixture in five stages starting and ending with dry (Dry, wet, dry, wet, dry) and mixing well between each addition. This will prevent the cake batter from curdling.
4. Once all your ingredients have been added to the mixer be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula to ensure everything is well incorporated and give the batter one last 30 second mix.
5. Spoon a tablespoon of cake batter into each cupcake case on top of the biscuit base layer.
Bake in the preheated oven for 20-23 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.
Once the cupcakes are baked, transfer to wire wracks and leave to cool completely.
Time to make some luscious buttercream!
1. Start by beating the vegan butter for around 3 minutes in a freestanding mixer until light and fluffy.
2. Whilst the butter is beating melt the dark chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of shallow boiling water. Once melted, set aside.
3. Sift the icing sugar into the beaten vegan butter in three or four stages mixing thoroughly between each addition.
4. Again, be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula regularly to ensure everything is well mixed.
5. Next sift and beat in the cocoa powder.
Once all the icing sugar and cocoa have been added pour the melted dark chocolate into the bowl and beat together.
6. If the mixture is looking too stiff slowly add 1-2 tablespoons of non dairy milk to loosen slightly.
7. Give the buttercream one final whip for a couple more minutes until nice and fluffy.
8. Spoon the chocolate buttercream into a piping bag with a nozzle in the end and pipe neatly onto your cooled cupcakes. I used a star nozzle to pipe roses on top of half my cupcakes and a simple round nozzle to pipe round dollops onto the rest. Don't panic, you can also easily apply the buttercream by just using a knife or spoon if you don't have piping bag to hand.
Now all the hard work is complete its time to get creative! I don't think it gets more fun than decorating cupcakes does it? You can literally top them with anything that takes your fancy. I chose to create a real mixture of different ones using D&D’s new vegan Buttons, Ballers and Drops (the ones i hadn't already gobbled whilst baking!) all of which were the perfect finishing touch. So go crazy and make them look good enough to eat!
Get that kettle boiling as its finally time to sit back, relax and pop your feet up with a warm cuppa and cupcake.