2 boxes vanilla cake mixes
6 medium free range eggs
240 ml vegetable oil (4 tbsp)
460 ml water
1 tub vanilla icing
red food colouring
6 chocolate peppermint creams
1 large marshmallow
2 blue coated chocolate sweets
2 pieces (6 inch) black liquorice twists
8 brown chocolate coated sweets
2 large black gumdrops
4 blue miniature chocolate coated sweets
4 pieces (2 inch) black string liquorice
Preheat your oven to 180°C (160°C for fan assisted ovens) / Gas Mark 4. Grease the tins or line with greaseproof paper and add cupcake cases to muffin tin.
Mix the eggs, oil, water and Vanilla Cake mixes gently together, and whisk (by hand or electric mixer) for 2-3 minutes until smooth and creamy.
Pour half of the mixture evenly into your two well-greased cake tins and then fill the 24 cupcake cases two-thirds full with the remaining mixture.
Bake the two cakes in the centre of the oven for 23- 28 minutes and the cupcakes in the oven for 15-17 minutes or until a rounded knife inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes in the tin then cool on a cooling rack.
Place one cake, rounded side down on serving tray and remove cupcake cases from 3 of the cupcakes.
Position cupcakes against front of cake at a slight angle to create the ladybird’s head.
Spread a very thin layer of icing over the cake and cupcakes and place in the fridge for 30 minutes to seal in the crumbs.
Stir a few drops of the red food colouring into the Vanilla Icing and stir well. Then spread a thin layer of red coloured icing over the remaining cake.
Cut the red coloured cake in half and ice all of the sides, then refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Ice the chocolate covered cake and cupcakes with another layer of chocolate icing.
Position the red cake halves, rounded side up and slightly angled, on top of the chocolate covered cake to look like ladybird wings. Place peppermint creams on top of the red cake for spots.
Cut the marshmallow in half and push 1 blue chocolate sweet into each half. Attach marshmallows to ladybug’s head for eyes and insert liquorice twists for antennae.
For the baby ladybirds, cut and reserve the rounded tops of 2 cupcakes and spread with the red icing then spread the bottom part of the cupcakes with chocolate icing. Cut the red tops in half and position rounded side up and slightly angled, on the chocolate cupcake bottoms to resemble wings.