Pooja Dhingra’s Cupcake Recipe© Pooja Dhingra

Try Pooja Dhingra’s Christmas Cupcake Recipe At Home

Salva Mubarak
Senior Features Writer

You tell us that the first thing that pops up in your head when we say “Christmas” is not delicious desserts and we’ll show you a liar. Christmas is all about joy and warmth and one of the biggest things that provide said joy and warmth is dessert. The ‘macaron queen of India’ Chef Pooja Dhingra agrees with us wholeheartedly.

The founder of Le15 Patisserie and author of several cookbooks is a self-confessed Christmas fanatic. “Oh my God! I’m fully obsessed. Growing up, we used to have really long Christmas holidays in school. We celebrated it just like Diwali. We used to get a big Christmas tree and my mom would fill stockings with gifts. I remember this one year when we wrote notes for Santa Claus with what we wanted that year and I got something completely different from what I had written! My mom told me that Santa said that gift wasn’t available!”

As a grown-up, her love and obsession with all things Christmas is still as strong, but she has adopted newer traditions, “Ever since I went to college, I’ve started building my own Christmas traditions which involve watching many Christmas movies while cuddling up with a mug of hot chocolate!”

Dhingra admits that even if it’s not the holiday season, the pressure is always on for her to take care of the dessert. “I went to a friend’s birthday a couple of days ago and no one had told me to get the cake but they just expected that I would get it. The weird thing is that I did get the cake! It’s an unwritten rule now that if we’re all getting together, then I’m bringing the dessert!” she recounted while laughing.

The baker’s one important piece of advice for making desserts for Christmas is to keep it simple. “You want just warmth and comfort this season. You can make just a simple apple pie or a dessert that’s not very fancy.”

If you want a nudge in the right direction, Dhingra shared her special recipe for peppermint chocolate cupcakes and it sounds incredibly delicious.

“When I think of Christmas, peppermint is a flavour that comes out strongly. So I wanted to do something with peppermint and chocolate. So we made a Belgian chocolate cupcake and we made a white chocolate ganache that has peppermint in it. Dark chocolate and peppermint are a great combination. I made it into a cupcake, but you can make it into a cake or a loaf.”

Without further ado, here’s the recipe for Pooja Dhingra’s peppermint chocolate cupcakes…

Peppermint Chocolate Cupcakes by Pooja Dhingra©Pooja Dhingra


For the cupcake batter:

100g Butter

80g Dark Chocolate

70g Caster Sugar

35g Brown Sugar

130ml Water

7g Flaxseed

70g Flour

2g Baking Powder

For the ganache:

100g White Chocolate

25ml Cream

¼ tsp Peppermint Extract


For the cupcake batter:

● Melt the butter, dark chocolate, castor sugar and brown sugar over a double boiler. Add 100 ml of water to this mixture.

● In another bowl, mix together the remaining 30ml of water with the flaxseed. Let this sit for 5 minutes, and add it to your melted chocolate mixture.

● In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder.

● Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk until well combined.

● Pipe your batter into the lined cupcake mould and bake at 165°C for 12-14 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean!

For the ganache:

● Heat the cream and white chocolate over a double boiler. Whisk well, making sure all the chocolate has melted.

● Remove from the heat and add in some peppermint extract.

● Refrigerate this for 1-2 hours.

To assemble:

● Whip the cooled ganache and pipe it onto your cooled cupcakes.

● Top off the cupcakes with some crushed peppermint, and enjoy!