Well autumn is definatly here, the weather is grey and miserable and there is the smell of rotting leaves on the ground. Sounds horrible I know but I actually love all of it. Maybe it is just because I work from home so don't have to go out if I don't want to but there is something lovely about sitting in your living room looking out on a rainy day which warms your cockles (stupid english saying that I also love).
As well as working today seemed like the ideal day to do some baking, to me there is nothing like a just warm fresh out the oven cake on a autumnal day. So in raiding my cupboard to make my plain sponge a bit more interesting I found dried fruit which I normally have on my cereal. After a quick phone call to my superstar baker brother for the essential quantities, I was all set. He makes the best victoria sponge known to man so I always know that his advice will bring forth great cakes. I decided to make some cranberry and sultana vanilla buns (also known as cupcakes). Perfect little sweet bites of goodness which I can take for my packed lunch tomorrow.
Anyway so here is the recipe if you would like to try making them. I recommend them just warm with a good old cup of tea, nice and simple. Would also be good with a dollop of cream cheese icing if you have any cream cheese, which I didn't. Of course you can also use most varieties of dried fruit, also good are apricots, raisins and my all time number one favourite cherries.
2 large eggs
4 oz sugar
4 oz unsalted butter or margerine
4 oz self raising flour
half a tsp of vanilla extract
enough dried cranberries and sultanas so that you have them evenly distributed through out the mixture.
This should make around 9 large buns or 12 smaller ones.
Do the usual, preheat oven at gas mark 4. Cream butter and sugar and stir in eggs and add vanilla. Fold in flour, mix in fruit. Put in bun cases in a tin and cook for about 20/25 mins or until slightly golden on top. Leave to slightly cool on cooling rack. EAT!!! Or if you have more will power than me you can keep these in an airtight container for up to 3 or 4 days or if you are more prepared like my mum in the freezer for ages and then defrost before eating. Perfect for kiddies lunch boxes as it keeps everything else cold.