Mulled Wine // Chocolate Mulled Wine Cupcakes with Spiced Mascarpone and Orange Icing

007 Mulled Wine

It's Christmas time! Part of my heart is still in London, so I still associate mulled wine with Christmas time. Also, a really great long weekend in Berlin one December (I still remember that half a duck dinner Lisa)! It was a bit of a no-brainer for me to try and merge Gl├╝hwein (mulled wine) and cake. Steve has a great recipe for mulled wine that involves roasted macadamias and "the secret: a LOT of sugar", but that sounded too good to bake into a cake. I also doubt you'd get any of the macadamia nut flavour coming through. So Jamie Oliver's recipe would have to do.

007 Mulled Wine
007 Mulled Wine

Chocolate Mulled Wine Cupcakes with Spiced Mascarpone and Orange Icing
Makes 24 cupcakes.

Mulled Wine (slightly modified from Jamie Oliver’s recipe):
  • 1 orange
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 lime
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 3 dried bay leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 bottle red wine (I used a $3 clearskin!)
  1. Peel large sections of peel from your orange, lemon and lime. Put the sugar in a large saucepan over a medium heat, add the pieces of peel and squeeze in the orange juice.
  2. Add the cloves, cinnamon stick, bay leaves, nutmeg and vanilla. Stir in just enough red wine to cover the sugar.
  3. Let this simmer until the sugar has completely dissolved into the red wine and then bring to the boil. Keep on a rolling boil for about 4 to 5 minutes, or until you’ve got a beautiful thick syrup.
  4. When your syrup is ready, turn the heat down to low and add your star anise and the rest of the wine. Gently heat the wine.

Chocolate Mulled Wine Cupcakes
  • 180g butter, at room temperature
  • 400g soft dark brown sugar
100g granulated sugar
4 eggs
  • 250mL of mulled wine (can add more later, but start with 250mL and see how runny the mixture is before you add any more)
  • ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 100g cocoa powder

  • 280g plain flour
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Line your trays with cupcake cases.
  2. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat (or cream, to use the baking term!) the butter and sugars until pale and fluffy.
  3. Add the eggs and mix well, then add the mulled wine and mix until the batter is evenly combined.
  4. Fold in all the dry ingredients with a metal spoon until just combined.
  5. Fill the cupcake cases and bake for approximately 20 minutes, until a wooden skewer comes out clean.

Spiced Mascarpone and Orange Icing
  • 50g unsalted butter, at room temperature

  • juice and zest of ½ orange
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 175g icing sugar

  • 125g mascarpone
  1. Put the butter, orange juice and zest, cinnamon and half the icing sugar in a bowl and beat, using an electric hand beater on a low speed, until smooth.
  2. Add the rest of the icing sugar and beat again until well combined.
  3. Add the mascarpone and continue to beat, this time on a medium speed, for about 30 seconds, until combined. Do not overbeat.
  4. Refrigerate the icing until just before you are ready to use it.

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