"Never Trust a Man with a Mustache" Cupcakes

This recipe is contributed by Hannah, author of the blog NR11: English Kitchen Baking!

"Never put anything on paper, my boy, and never trust a man with a small black mustache," says Lord Ickenham in PG Wodehouse’s 1958 novel, Cocktail Time.

Everyone loves a mustache, and for those of us who can't grow our own, an edible, decorated top lip is the next best thing. I came up with these cupcakes in a fierce winter in North Norfolk when it was too freezing to do anything but bake. It provides one of those individual pleasures, eaten whilst wrapped up in a blanket and reading a book, sticky-fingered. They work equally well presented in a neat little box to a sophisticated mustachioed friend to make them smile.

Never Trust a Man with a Mustache Cupcakes

Makes 10 cupcakes 


  • 1/2 cup (100g) butter
  • 2/3 cup (150g) superfine sugar (golden caster sugar)
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/3 cup (150g) all-purpose flour, sifted*
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder*
  • 1/4 tsp salt*
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract (or vanilla paste)
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon

    *If using self-rising flour, exclude the baking powder and salt.


  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 cup (200g) confectioner's sugar (icing sugar)


  • Edible rice paper
  • Food marker pen


  1. Preheat the oven to 360° F (180°C). Prepare a baking tray with 10 cupcake cases.
  2. In a mixing bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Gradually mix in the eggs, one at a time.
  3. Add the flour, milk, water, vanilla and lemon zest, and continue mixing until smooth.
  4. Divide the mixture evenly between the cupcake cases.
  5. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes and remove when golden.
  6. Leave to cool on a wire rack, before decorating.
  7. To make the icing, sieve the icing sugar into a bowl. In a small saucepan, warm the lemon juice over a low heat. Gradually add the juice to the sugar and mix until thick and glossy. Spread the icing over the tops of the cupcakes with a palette knife.
  8. To decorate, use a food marker pen to draw 10 moustaches onto edible rice paper. Cut out the moustaches and place one on top of each cupcake.

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