Cinco de Mayo

5th May commemorates the day, around 150 years ago, when the Mexican army beat the French army in Puebla.  The French army was bigger and expected to win, but the Mexican army somehow managed to beat them.  This victory is celebrated every year.

What does every celebration need? Cake!  I wanted to make some cake for Ben to take into work and as part of my 101 in 1001 challenge I've been trying new recipes from my recipe book collection.  I found a pamphlet from Girl Guides South Africa - not entirely sure where I got it from, or how long I've had it, but it hasn't been written in so I know it's unused.  I annotate all the recipes I use, either to adjust cooking times, or ingredients, or even just to remind myself I didn't like it and not to make it again!

Admittedly, a South African recipe book isn't very Mexican, but honey is eaten a lot in Mexico.  Ben and I have lots of honey in the flat at the moment, we seem to have accumulated quite a few jars as we know local beekeepers.  I don't particularly like it raw, as it were, but I thought I might like it in cake.  So cake I made.

I didn't want to make a proper cake, so I adjusted the recipe for cupcakes. 120g of margarine and 120g sugar creamed together and two eggs added.  150g SR flour, half a teaspoon of baking powder and two big dollops of honey.  How are you supposed to measure honey accurately?  I held a spoon over a boiling kettle so the honey would slide off easily, but I have no idea how much honey I added.  Splash of milk.  Then put in cupcake cases (I filled 15 cases) and baked for 20 mins at 180C.  This was possibly a tad too long, I meant to check on them earlier but forgot.  They tasted good - definitely had a honey flavour, but not too overpowering for people like me who say they don't like honey.

When they were cold (or cooling...I have not much patience with these things) I added a honey fudge icing - 60g margarine which I'd melted along with two more dollops of honey (probably about the same amount as went in the cupcakes, but as I said, I have no way of telling) and some water, then all of that went into 180g icing sugar.  This was then spooned over the cupcakes.  The icing was too runny (and the cakes weren't exactly cold) so if I made them again I would try and be patient as well as add more icing sugar.  There was also quite a bit of icing left over - perfect for dipping the cupcakes into!

The cupcakes did leave a funny taste in my mouth - it feels like I've eaten too much sugar.  Either I ate too many (I've had two cupcakes, and quite a few spoonfuls of icing) or they're just too sweet for me and/or I still don't like honey.

Either way, I'm sure Ben's colleagues will like them and I got to tick off a new recipe.  I'm counting that as a success!


  1. A few years ago on "Cinco de Mayo", with a new Mexican son-in-law in the house, I found a recipe for "Polvorones di Canela" on They are cinnamon-flavoured shortbread biscuits and have been a big hit with the whole family. They are probably easy enough for you to make with your brownies, too.

    I'm enjoying your daily posts.

    1. Oh my goodness, how did I not know about that website?! It is amazing, thank you so much for telling me about it! I've earmarked quite a few recipes and yes, I reckon my Brownies would be able to make quite a few of them :-)

  2. New recipes are always a bit of a risk, but definitely worth trying. I'm glad you got to try the cupcakes, even if they weren't to your liking. I rarely have honey myself and just use it for some Asian sauces or, most commonly, for hot lemon, ginger and honey when I have a cold. The rest of the time it is just too sweet.

    1. If you don't try it, you could be missing out on your new favourite thing! Always annoys me when Brownies won't try new foods - chocolate was new to you once, and look at how much you like that!


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