I have almost a full jar of sprinkles in the cupboard that need to be used up. I know this is unusual – everyone loves sprinkles – but I don’t often decorate things when I bake. So, I picked out a cookbook on cupcakes (Cupcakes by Susannah Blake) and decided to choose something from it that would benefit from some white and pink balls being scattered on top of them.

I decided to attempt a recipe for pistachio cupcakes, as I’ve never cooked with pistachios before. I ground them in the food processor, leaving me with a fragrant green rubble that smelled fantastic. Unfortunately, by the time they’d been baked into cupcakes and topped with icing, the pistachio flavour was very muted. This may have been my own fault – I didn’t want to make a royal icing to top them with as the recipe suggested, so I instead made the glacé icing from the cardamom cupcakes I made a few weeks ago, adding the sprinkles on top. Overall, it was a bit too much as the sweetness overpowered the fairly delicate flavour of the cake.

I have two challenges now from this baking experience, firstly to develop a way of using the pistachio cake in a way that would allow the flavour to shine and secondly to use the sprinkles with a cake that will stand up to their sweetness, or perhaps just make a plain sponge, so that the sprinkles can be the star of the show, as perhaps they should be.


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