We recently celebrated Helena's tenth birthday and it felt like such a milestone in this journey of motherhood. Not only was Helena double digits but we'd been parents for ten whole years! How incredible is it to be a mama; especially a mama to this amazing girl! Of course I've always felt so lucky to be a mother but for some reason, when Helena turned ten this year it felt such a milestone and as a family such a feeling of contentment. We've travelled and lived in so many different places throughout Helena's short life. She's lived in five countries, moved to eight different houses (all with different door colours; a very important fact when you're a child moving around) and can speak three languages and is currently learning two more. But it hasn't been until this year when we began planting roots in Scotland that we all felt assured we knew where and what we should be doing in life. On the 13th of November this year I had a few tears in my eyes as I dropped her off to school, not because I was sad but because I saw in her face a sparkle that I knew that she knew who Helena was.
So when I came home from that school drop off, I made these little apple cakes for my first love and poured my heart and soul into them. It was a dreamy day. A day to remember that ten years ago I became the mama to the most amazing child there is. I promise I will treasure you Helena and watch you grow into the shining star you were named after. These little cakes are for you.
Ingredients (makes 16)
- 4oz unsalted butter (This recipe calls for really good French butter. I've tried it with regular butter but it just doesn't taste as good. President is our favourite.)
- 4oz light brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 apples, peeled and chopped
- 5oz organic plain white flour
- 3oz organic wholewheat flour
- pinch of salt
- half tsp baking powder
- half tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 tbsp milk
- creme fraiche, apple crisps and fresh rosemary for decoration
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. Cream together the butter and the sugar until pale and fluffy in a large mixing bowl. Add the eggs (one at a time) and mix in the vanilla extract.
- In a separate bowl mix the flours, salt, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda together. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture. Once it's all combined mix in the apples and the ground cinnamon and slowly pour in the milk.
- Using a tablespoon add the mixture to individual cupcake holders and bake for 20 minutes until the tops are golden brown. As an extra treat sprinkle brown sugar on top before they go into the oven.
- Once cooled dollop creme fraiche on top, add an apple crisp (we love Emily's Apple Crisps) and a small sprig of rosemary.
These are also just as delicious without the topping, served plain in a lunch box.