Wednesday 14 August 2013

Sex on the Beach Cupcakes

sex on the beach cupcakes

I was wondering what to make for Calendar Cakes, as the theme this month is "Summer lovin'". The suggestions include summer holiday memories, and I was wondering how I could bake a cake relating to Butlins, where I spent many a childhood holiday.... funnily enough I see that the Beaver Club has now changed its name to the rather more politically correct Club Red (as the entertainers are called the Redcoats).

But while we're on the subject of smut, the other thing that summer means to me is sex on the beach - not literally (I imagine the sand would get everywhere!) but the cocktail. It's a pretty girly drink with a very sweet taste, made with vodka, peach schnapps, orange juice and grenadine, and usually served with a little umbrella. I have had many of these at beach bars on various Greek islands... so I wanted to turn the flavours into a cake. I have to admit though that I did my usual thing of not having the right ingredients... I decided on the spur of the moment to make these for a small gathering I was going to the next day, so I had to make do with what I had in the cupboard! I only had one egg in the house as well so halved the quantity of ingredients I would usually use and made six small cupcakes out of it.

Sex on the Beach cupcakes
an original recipe by Caroline Makes
This recipe makes 6 small cupcakes so feel free to double it.

1 egg
50g butter, softened
50g caster sugar
50g self-raising flour
2 tbsp vodka
2 tbsp orange juice or 1 tbsp neat orange squash
1 tbsp grenadine
50g butter, softened 
100g icing sugar
1 tbsp peach schnapps or peach liqueur
cocktail umbrellas, Dr. Oetker neon sugar and coloured fondant to decorate

Preheat the oven to 180C. Cream the butter and the sugar then add the egg and fold in the flour.

Add the cocktail flavours- I saved the peach for the icing, and used vodka, grenadine, and orange squash as I didn't have any juice.

Add to the cake batter and mix - it will turn pale pink from the grenadine.

In keeping with the cocktail theme I decided to use these leopard print cupcake cases, which I got from Tesco. It wasn't that long ago that you had to go to a specialist online retailer to find patterned cake cases so I'm really pleased now that Tesco does them. They also have a shoe design one that I used for my birthday party last year, that cost me rather more from an online retailer!
Fill the cake cases with the batter.

Bake for about 15 minutes

Cream the butter and icing sugar to make buttercream and add the peach schnapps or liqueur. If the mixture is too runny, add some more icing sugar. You don't need this to be thick enough to pipe swirls but it does need to stay on the cupcake.

I was sent this Dr. Oetker neon sugar a little while ago. It has four separate compartments, each with its own lid, with blue, yellow, pink and green. I like the container as it makes it very easy to use one colour at a time. If you were sprinkling this over cakes it would go a long way, but if you are completely covering a cupcake, as I have done below, you will get about three out of each colour sugar (so 12 from this tub in total).

I had the idea of making my cupcakes look like a beach - this is why I spread the buttercream evenly. I used the yellow neon sugar on half of each cupcake, to represent sand, and blue neon sugar on the other half to represent the ocean.

I had some cocktail umbrellas in the drawer, and I also made a pair of flip flops from blue fondant and used an edible gem to decorate them.

I also used the blue fondant to make a shark's fin!

The cupcake at the back has a pair of goggles and a snorkel

 I bought this mini cupcake stand from the Dot Com Gift Shop; I absolutely love it. It was only £3.95 and is just the right size to display one cupcake; it has a really cute pattern and mini cakes hanging off the sides.

 Top-down view of one of the cakes on the mini cake stand

All packaged up and ready to go! My verdict: the cakes were really light and springy, and tasted good though I wouldn't have been able to pick out the sex on the beach flavours if I didn't already know - maybe I need to add more vodka next time! The neon sugar worked really well - as well as being easy to use, it held its colour and didn't sink in or bleed into the buttercream despite having been made the night before. Eating the neon sugar also gives a satisfying crunch that worked well as it was supposed to represent sand!

I'm sending this to Calendar Cakes, hosted by Laura of Laura Loves Cakes and Rachel of DollyBakes. I think a sex on the beach cake fits very literally with the theme of summer lovin'!

The theme for this month's Baking with Spirit, hosted by Janine at Cake of the Week, is an alcoholic ingredient that represents summer. Peach schnapps or liqueur itself, as well as the sex on the beach cocktail, says summer to me!

I've also just realised this cake contains grenadine, and the letter that my Alphabakes co-host Ros of The More Than Occasional Baker has chosen for the challenge this month is G.


  1. very nice -I expect they tasted good.

  2. I love these! The neon sugar really makes them stand out. Thanks for entering BWS - I really appreciate your regular entries!

  3. These are perfect summer, especially with the good weather we've been having! They make me want to go on holiday somewhere exotic! Thanks for entering this month's Calendar Cakes :-)

  4. Wow they are amazing - I love any kind of cake based on a cocktail. The neon sugar really works too!

  5. Such cute cupcakes! Love the idea and the decorations - perfect for summer! A great entry for AlphaBakes too.


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