- Preheat oven to 180°C. Line 24 cupcake holes with cupcake paper cases.
- For vanilla cupcakes, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, cream butter on high until light and fluffy. Add sugar slowly, mixing until fully combined. Add vanilla bean paste and eggs one at a time, beating until well combined. Sift flour and baking powder together. On low speed, add 1/3 of the flour mixture, then ½ the milk. Repeat until flour and milk are incorporated, but don’t over-mix. Spoon into cupcake cases and bake for 18 – 20 minutes or until lightly golden and springy to the touch. Cool on a rack.
- For icing, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, cream butter and vanilla together until light and fluffy. Add icing sugar a spoon at a time and alternate with a little milk. Beat for 6 – 8 minutes, adjusting milk and icing sugar until icing is fluffy and spreadable. Place in a large piping bag fitted with a 1cm star nozzle. Pipe icing onto cupcakes and decorate with pink sugar flowers.
- For chocolate cupcakes, increase oven temperature to 190°C. Line 15 cupcake holes with paper cases.
- Whisk oil, buttermilk, milk and egg in a large bowl until combined. Sift flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt together, then stir in the sugar. Add 1/3 of the dry ingredients into the oil mixture, alternating with the boiling water. Spoon into 12 – 14 cupcake cases (the mixture will be quite runny) and bake for 18 – 20 minutes or until risen, and springy to the touch. Cool on a rack.
- For icing, melt chocolate in a bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water. Set aside to cool. Place butter and cream cheese in an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, and mix until combined. Check there are no lumps from the cream cheese – if so, beat for a little longer. Add icing sugar then the cooled melted chocolate and mix until well combined. Scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula if necessary. Add extra icing sugar if required – check the consistency of the icing first. Pipe onto the cooled cupcakes and decorate with silver cachous.
For both cupcakes: Preparation: 35 minutes Cooking: 20 minutes