I haven’t posted a Harry Potter recipe since March because I’ve been more inspired lately by French and Turkish food. However, creating and testing a recipe for cauldron cakes was a blast! It made me remember why I (originally) created a food blog to recreate recipes from the Harry Potter universe. My cauldron cakes are composed of fluffy vanilla cupcakes with a sweet and tangy dulce de leche filling, and bits and pieces of white chocolate. They are delicious and would be great too served as traditional cupcakes.
GOLD CAULDRONS FTW
I wanted to make my cauldron cakes golden like the gold cauldron Harry originally wanted to buy when he visited Diagon Alley for the first time. Can you imagine Snape’s reaction to Harry showing up with a gold cauldron? Thank goodness Hagrid was there to make him buy a normal cauldron made from pewter. But it was such an innocent and naïve impulse, this moment always stayed with me! I read a bit of trivia somewhere saying that the cauldron cakes are chocolate flavored. However, I don’t remember any passage in the books clearly stating that they are chocolate cakes.
I only have the first one with me so I couldn’t check in the others. I’m slightly obsessing over finding a proof for this chocolate claim, so if you have it, please tell me! I wouldn’t change my recipe because I love my vanilla flavored cauldron cakes, but I’d like to know for sure what’s canon or not. I’ve been very inspired by the other cauldron cakes recipes posted online, especially Pastry Affair. Gluing the cauldrons’ feet with melted chocolate? Genius, I would never have thought of it myself.
FLUFFY CUPCAKES AND BASIC DECORATION
I usually find cupcakes to be overly sweet and dry, which is a shame because they are supposed to be a mini-version of a cake. Maybe it’s because people spend too much time on the presentation and not enough on the quality of the cake in itself. My cauldron cakes are far from being dry, they are moist and a fluffy with a crumb that spring backs! I would have no problem doubling the ingredients and making a ‘normal’ cake out of this recipe. Truly this recipe can hold its own and it’s my go-to if I need a base for a muffin recipe. It’s a foolproof recipe and you can make it your own by adding a different extract to the batter or flavoring the whipped cream differently.
I know that the recipe can seem a bit daunting because there are a lot of instructions! But in effect, I swear making these cauldron cakes isn’t that difficult. All the different components are easy and will seem pretty familiar if you’ve baked/decorated cupcakes before. If not, there are lots of photos to accompany the instructions. Believe if I can make these, you certainly can! I have no patience when it comes to decorating my bakes. I like them and simple! To me what matters is the taste and not how it looks and I’ve very rarely thought that a frosting/glaze/buttercream/marzipan actually improved the taste of a bake. On the contrary, it usually makes it overly sweet. Don’t get me started on layer cakes.
All this to say that the cauldron cakes decoration is minimal (thus easy), and actually tastes great. The cauldron cakes’ flavors are straightforward; a vanilla and white chocolate cupcake with sweet and tangy dulce de leche whipped cream. I am sure they will please young and old alike! If you’ve got any Potterhead friends (or kids), making cauldron cakes together can be a fun weekend project.
KEEP AN EYE ON THE CHOCOLATE
The only thing you need to be aware of is to be careful while you temper the white chocolate. Tempering is key to make sure that the chocolate decoration will harden quickly and the chocolate will snap when you bite into it. It’s not hard but you need to be careful; 1/ not to let water spill on your chopped chocolate, 2/ not to go over 43°C (110°F). If the chocolate gets too hot, it will take ages to set, or it might not set at all. Thus forcing you to put your cauldron cakes in the fridge, which could dry out the cakes if you refrigerate them for a long time. It’s normal that if your melted chocolate doesn’t harden in minutes on a hot summer day.
If you’ve never tempered chocolate before, I’m sure you’re gonna be fine! You don’t need to reach the professional-looking shine anyway since the chocolate is going to get covered in gold glitter. And if you do need to refrigerate the cauldron cakes for the chocolate to set, 20 min in the fridge won’t make them stale!
You should plan ahead for this recipe since the batter needs to be chilled for 4 hours or overnight. I also highly recommend you chill the mixing bowl in which you will prepare the whipped cream, along with the cream and the whisk attachment. Making sure that everything is fridge cold is the path to a successful whipped cream! If you can use a narrow mixing bowl, the better. Adding a pinch of cream of tartar will stabilize the whipped cream. It will hold its shape longer and better but it won’t set forever. I highly encourage you to eat the cauldron cakes on the day they are made.
Cauldron cakes will please muggles and wizards alike. Made with fluffy vanilla cupcakes, covered in white chocolate and filled with dulce de leche whipped cream, they are sure to be a hit!
For the cauldron cakes:
- 150g flour (1 cup + 1 tbsp)
- 5g baking powder (1 tsp)
- ¼ tsp salt
- 100g caster sugar (½ cup)
- 50g butter (3.5 oz), softened to room temperature + a bit more for the pan
- 1 egg
- 90ml milk (⅓ cup + 1 tbsp)
- 30g Greek yogurt (2 tbsp)
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
For the decoration:
- 115g white chocolate (4 oz)
- edible gold glitter
For the felix felicis potion:
- 120ml heavy whipping cream (½ cup), fridge-cold (refrigerate the whisk and the mixing bowl also)
- 1 tsp caster sugar, heaped
- 1 tbsp dulce de leche, heaped (or 1 tsp of your preferred extract)
- pinch of cream of tartar (optional, if you’re making the cauldron cakes in advance and want to stabilize the whipped cream)
For the cauldron cakes:
- Generously butter 8 cups of a nonstick muffin pan (with a capacity of 70ml /⅓ cup each). Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt into a small bowl.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the sugar and softened butter at medium speed until creamy with a hand mixer, about 2 min.
- Reduce the speed to low, add the egg and beat for 1 min. Beat in half of the flour mixture. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as needed.
- Add the milk and yogurt and beat for 1 min. Add the other half of the flour mixture and beat just until incorporated, still at low speed.
- Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared muffin cups. Do not fill them all the way to the top, ¾ full is best! Cover the pan with plastic wrap (it shouldn’t touch the batter) and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
- Set a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to the 250°C (480°F). Put the muffin pan in the oven and reduce the temperature to 180°C (350°F). Bake for 20 min or until the tops are slightly golden and a toothpick inserted into a cauldron cake comes out clean.
- Let the cauldron cakes cool down in the pan for 5 min before transferring them to a cooling rack. Let them cool down completely before continuing.
- Turn the cauldron cakes upside down so that the dome is at the bottom. If they can’t stand straight, slice off a bit of the bottom to flatten them. Using a paring knife, hollow out a 3cm (1 in) round piece, about 2cm (0.8 in) deep from the center of each cauldron cake, leaving each cauldron with a 0,5cm (0.2 in) rim.
For the decoration:
- With a long-bladed knife chop 5 chocolate squares into 32 even small pieces. These will be the ‘feet’ of your cauldron cakes. Finely chop the rest of the chocolate squares.
- Line a baking tray with baking parchment or aluminum foil. Check the circumference of the cauldron cakes’ bottoms and place the chocolate pieces/cauldrons’ feet accordingly in groups of 4 on the tray.
- Fill a saucepan with 5cm (2 in) of water and place over low heat. Place the rest of the chopped chocolate into a smaller saucepan. Place this pan on top of the first pan (its bottom shouldn’t touch the water).
- Melt the chocolate, stirring with a spatula from time to time. Check the temperature often with a thermometer. Take the pan off the heat as soon as it has reached 43°C (110°F). If the chocolate gets too hot, it will take ages to set, or it might only set in the fridge.
- Let the melted chocolate cool down to 30°C (86°F), stirring often with a spatula. Then transfer it to a small bowl, a bit larger than the cauldron cakes’ circumferences.
- Gently dip the bottom of each cauldron cake 2cm (0.8 in) deep into the melted chocolate and place on its ‘feet’. The melted chocolate will work as a glue and when it will have set the feet will be attached to the cauldron.
- Pour the rest of the melted chocolate into a piping bag. Cut off the tip, less than 0,5cm (0.2 in), and pipe the melted chocolate on the cauldron cakes’ rims. Let the chocolate on the cauldron cakes to harden and set at room temperature. If the chocolate doesn’t seem to set you can put the cauldron cakes in the fridge for 20 min.
- Then, cover the cauldron cakes with the gold glitter (I used a brush but you could certainly do it with your finger).
For the felix felicis potion:
- Pour the cream into the cold mixing bowl and beat with a hand mixer at slow speed for 2 min.
- Sprinkle the caster sugar and increase the speed to medium. Beat until medium peaks form, about 1 min.
- Add the dulce de leche (and optionally the cream of tartar) and increase the speed to high. Beat until stiff peaks form, about 30 seconds to 1 min.
- Spoon the whipped cream into a piping bag, snip off the tip and fill the cauldron cakes.
- Sprinkle a bit of gold glitter on top of the filled cauldrons. Here you go, your cauldron cakes filled with felix felicis are ready!
- Serving Size: 1
- Calories: 313
- Fat: 16.1g
Keywords: harry potter, cupcakes, halloween
Looking for other Harry Potter recipes? Here are some of my favorites: