Strawberry shortcake cupcakes
For the strawberry ice-cream icing
- 175g/6oz lightly salted butter, softened
- 350g/12oz icing sugar
- 100g/3½oz strawberry ice cream, melted
For the cake
To make the icing, whisk the butter with an electric hand whisk until pale and creamy. Sift in the icing sugar. Stir with a spoon to roughly combine and then beat with the electric whisk until light and fluffy. Add the ice cream and whisk until just combined.
Place in the fridge for at least 1 hour. Whisk the chilled icing until fluffy then transfer to a piping bag fitted with a 1cm/½in star nozzle and put it back in the fridge while you get on with the baking.
Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4 and line a 12-hole large muffin tray with some cupcake cases of your choice. Add a biscuit to the base of each case, then top that with a whole strawberry, pointy bit facing up.
To make the cake batter, add the clotted cream and sugar to a mixing bowl and beat together until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each one. Add the vanilla bean paste and flour and mix until you have a smooth batter.
Divide the mixture between the 12 cases, making sure that each strawberry is completely covered. Tap the tray on the work surface to level off the batter and bake for 15 minutes, until they are fluffy and golden.
Take out of the oven and leave in the tin for 10 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.
Pipe the icing onto the tops of the shortcake cupcakes and then sprinkle with the freeze-dried strawberries.
These are best kept in the fridge and eaten within two days.