Jean-Christophe Novelli's Golden Honey and Lemon Cupcakes - Honest Mum


Renowned celebrity chef Jean-Christophe Novelli has whipped up a delicious gold-themed cupcake recipe to raise awareness and money as part of a leading cancer charity’s #BeBoldGoGold campaign for Childhood Cancer Awareness Month this September.

The French chef, whose young son Valentino was diagnosed with a rare type of cancer at just eight weeks old, hopes lots of people will get involved and have a go at baking the quick and easy recipe.

Jean-Christophe’s golden honey and lemon cupcakes reflect the gold theme of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, with supporters also being encouraged to wear a gold ribbon and help spread the word that cancer affects everyone, even children.

Jean-Christophe and his fiancee Michelle experienced the devastating impact of a child cancer diagnosis first hand when their baby son Valentino was diagnosed with neuroblastoma in 2016 – only 100 children are diagnosed with this type of cancer each year.

Thankfully, Valentino’s treatment was successful and now the family are supporting the launch of a new Neuroblastoma Research Fund with Children’s Cancer and Leukaemia Group (CCLG) on Valentino’s birthday on 7th September.

Jean-Christophe and Michelle Novelli with Valentino

Jean-Christophe said, ‘I hope my recipe is a fun way for everyone including children to join in with Childhood Cancer Awareness Month to help raise awareness. People can raise funds for childhood cancer by donating to CCLG or even having a cupcake bake sale! Until you are going through this experience yourself, you simply cannot imagine what it will be like’.

Michelle added. ‘Nothing can ever prepare you for seeing your baby in so much pain. It’s hard to imagine how someone so little can withstand so much. Our journey has been an emotional rollercoaster. We are incredibly thankful for the amazing support of our families, friends and the NHS staff. We hope to do everything we can to prevent other families from going through this’.

During Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, CCLG is raising awareness of the emotional impact on of having a child with cancer and is launching a #BeAChildCancerFriend animation and social media campaign aimed at helping people to understand how they can practically help families and how to give emotional support. The charity is also launching a Childhood Cancer Emotional Health and Wellbeing Research Fund, an online information hub and a parents’ Facebook group to help parents and carers access the support they need.

Ashley Gamble, Chief Executive of CCLG, said: ‘We’re delighted that Jean-Christophe and Michelle are lending their support to our campaign for Child Cancer Awareness Month as well as supporting our dedicated Neuroblastoma Research Fund. They know all too well the emotional and physical impact of a child cancer diagnosis. The launch of our two dedicated research funds will raise money for pioneering new research so that more children will survive a diagnosis and live happy, healthy and independent lives’.

There are around 1,800 new cancer cases in children in the UK every year, around five every day, with leukaemia being the most commonly diagnosed cancer in children. CCLG and its members are the experts in the treatment and care of children with cancer in the UK and Ireland. The charity funds and supports innovative and world-class research into childhood cancer and coordinates the UK’s national biobank of donated tumour and tissue samples.

To find out how you can get involved or how to donate in support of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month #CCAM, visit:


Jean-Christophe Novelli’s Golden Honey and Lemon Cupcakes with Runny Honey Filling and Honey Buttercream





  • 2 eggs
  • 125g self-raising flour
  • 125g margarine
  • 25g runny honey
  • 75g caster sugar
  • Zest of 1 lemon

Honey filling (optional)

  • 75g sugar
  • 55g runny honey
  • 110g double cream
  • 1tbsp butter

Honey buttercream

  • 125g soft butter
  • 175g icing sugar
  • 25g runny honey



Runny honey filling
Place the honey and sugar in a small pan and stir over a medium heat until the sugar is melted.
Allow the mixture to bubble gently without stirring for a few minutes until the mixture becomes caramel coloured.
Take off the heat and stir in the cream then the butter.
Let this mixture cool before putting it in the cupcakes.

Preheat the oven to 180°C.
Lay 10 metallic gold cupcake cases in a 12 hole muffin tin.
Put all the ingredients for the cupcakes in a bowl and beat together, ideally with an electric mixer, until combined and soft.
Divide the mixture between the 10 cases.
Bake for 15 minutes until lightly golden and springy to touch.

Carefully beat the icing sugar and soft butter together until soft and creamy (this is easier with an electric mixer but the icing sugar can create a huge cloud of sugar dust, so beware!)
Add the honey and beat until combined.

Assembling the cupcakes
Once the cupcakes are cool cut a hole in the middle and fill the hole with the runny honey filling.
Top the cupcakes with buttercream.


To decorate:

Rose piping:
Use a piping bag with a large star nozzle filled with buttercream. Start piping from the centre of the cupcake and spiral outwards finishing on the edge. Finish with a puff of edible gold glitter.

Gold sprinkles:
Spread the buttercream on to the cupcake using a butter knife then sprinkle gold crunch sprinkles on top.

Smiley face:
To make the gold dome, roll out caramel coloured sugar paste and cut out a large circle. Gently lay the circle over a foam dome and allow to dry overnight. To make the face, pipe white dots using royal icing, cut out eyes and a mouth using circle cutters and black and white sugar paste.


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