Welcome to my Instructable! I've love looking at cupcake recipes, but when I look at the calorie count for the cupcakes with the towers of beautiful frosting on top, I start to feel a little guilty (Especially when they can be from 300 to 600 calories!). So this is a recipe for cupcakes that come to 180 calories without icing, and just under 200 with a dash of icing on top! And they are not dinky, these are full sized bursting out of the muffin wrapper cupcakes! Also, aside from the eggs, all of the ingredients can be kept in the store-cupboard, so these are great to bake if you don't fancy leaving the house to get fresh ingredients.
Step 1: The Ingredients!
The ingredients are:
410g tin of pear halves, in juice (The secret ingredient that keeps this cupcake moist but low calorie!)
75g cocoa powder
125g caster sugar
3 teaspoons of vanilla extract
50ml vegetable oil (If you have grapeseed or walnut, these are fine too)
3 medium sized eggs
225g plain flour
2 teaspoons of baking powder
50 grams of icing sugar (optional, for the icing drizzled on top)
And the tools you will need:
A measuring jug
A small saucepan
A fork or small whisk
A large mixing bowl (For the chocolate pear mix)
Cupcake tin and cupcake cases
A small mixing bowl (For weighing out flour)
A blender (Or anything that can purée liquid)
Step 2: Make the Chocolate and Pear Mix
First of all, drain your tin of pears, keeping the juice so you can use it later.
Weigh out the caster sugar and cocoa powder in a small saucepan and add 125 ml of the pear juice, discarding any juice left over. Heat the mix, whisking continuously until it is smooth and well combined. As soon as the mixture begins to boil, pour the nixture into a bowl and add the drained pears. Leave this mixture for 15 minutes to cool.
While waiting for the mix to cool, preheat the oven to gas mark 3, and line your cupcake or muffin tray with liners. Then have a little break.
Step 3: Chocolate Pear Mix Continued
After your pear mix has had 15 minutes to cool, put it in your blender and purée it. I used a hand blender, which worked pretty well. When it is smooth, pour the mixture back into the large mixing bowl, and add 3 teaspoons of vanilla and the three eggs. Beat until fully incorporated, then sieve and fold in the flour and baking powder until the mixture is smooth. At this stage it will be really thick, so do not panic.
Using a tablespoon at a time, transfer the mixture from your large mixing bowl to the cupcake cases. By using a tablespoon you can ensure that the cupcakes will roughly be the same sizes, but if you want to be more precise you can weigh the mixture, and place equal amounts into the cases. Finally, put your cupcakes into the oven (It should be at Gas Mark 3) and wait for 20 minutes, or until they only have a few crumbs (But no wet mixture) attached to a toothpick when pricked. Let them cool in the cupcake tray for 5 minutes, then put them on a wire rack until completely cooled.
Step 4: Ice the Cupcakes!
At this stage, you could just leave the cupcakes as they are. But I love icing, so this is the lowest calorie way to sweeten up your cupcakes a bit (You could also do a buttercream topping or melt some chocolate on top, which will make it less low calorie but may add even more deliciousness).
Take 50 grams of icing sugar, and make a well in the centre. Add cold water a teaspoon at a time, mixing until you have a mix enough liquid that will drip off the back of a spoon, but will not spread when drizzled on the cupcake. Put your cupcakes on parchment paper to reduce potential mess, and then drizzle your cupcakes until your heart is content. Let the icing set, then admire and eat!