In order to find a cake I was happy with, I experimented around with different techniques and recipes but settled on one that I thought could yield results similar to what I was aiming for. I used a pound cake recipe and then drizzled some of the cakes with syrup before layering on the buttercream. I made three different cupcakes: lemon, strawberry and rose, and ultimate vanilla. I think the strawberry and rose cupcake was the most successful but my guineapigs came to different conclusions.
150g plain flour
125g caster sugar
125g unsalted butter - softened
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons of baking power
1 part sugar
1 part water
flavouring (for the rose syrup: good quality rose water; for the lemon syrup: juice and zest of a lemon; for the vanilla syrup: vanilla extract)
85g butter - softened
160g icing sugar
flavouring (I used strawberry extract for the rose and strawberry cupcake and vanilla extract for the other two cupcakes)
Sift the flour and baking powder three times and set aside. Whisk the other ingredients on a fast speed setting for 3 minutes until the mixture has expanded and paled in colour. Add the flour and baking powder and whisk for an additional minute. Spoon the mixture into eight muffin size cups and let rest at room temperature for half an hour. Bake at 180C for 20 or so minutes until golden and puffed. Whilst the cakes are baking you should make the syrup of your choice. When the cupcakes come out of the oven (and are still hot) you should poke the surface of the cakes with a toothpick before layer a teaspoon or two of syrup. Let the cupcakes cool and then make the buttercream by working the icing sugar slowly into the butter. Add the flavour and then using a piping back (or a palette knife) layer the buttercream onto the surface of the cupcakes. That's your chance to be creative (and messy; see pics).