For the filling
For the frosting
Preheat the oven to 180°C, gas mark 4. Line 2 x 12-hole cupcake tins with cupcake liners.
In a medium bowl, sift together flour and baking powder three times; set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 8 minutes. Beat in the vanilla and almond extracts.
Add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the milk and the water, and beginning and ending with the flour. Set the batter aside.
In a clean bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold gently into the cake batter until well combined.
Divide the batter between the prepared cupcake tins, filling them ¾ of the way. Bake until a cake tester inserted in the centre comes out clean and the cakes are golden brown, about 10-15 minutes.
Make the filling by mixing all the ingredients together and set aside.
To make the frosting, combine the sugar, honey and water and bring to a boil over a high heat. Cook the syrup until it reaches soft-ball stage (116°C).
Meanwhile, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg whites, vanilla, and salt until stiff peaks form.
When sugar mixture has reached 116°C, pour it into the beaten egg whites, down the side of the bowl while beating constantly on high speed, until the mixture is cool and thick, about 7 minutes.
Place the frosting in a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle.
To assemble the cupcakes, use a sharp knife to cut out the tops and make an indent in the top of each cupcake and fill with a generous spoonful of the filling. Pipe the frosting on top.
Serve with a dusting of icing sugar and a touch of gold leaf, if desired.