Friday, February 22, 2008
Week 8: Lemon Cupcakes with Lemon Kissed Buttercream Frosting
Hi friends! Winter is still upon us here in the Northeast. It is icy, blustery and just plain cold! Nearly a foot of snow has fallen today; that is quite alright with me! More time to spend in the kitchen with my favorite little guy whipping up a batch of sunshine. I am looking forward to the days when my cashmere scarf and tweed coat are a memory and short sleeve shirts and flirty skirts are in order. I am longing for the warmth of spring.
For now, the best way to achieve the warmth of spring on a snowy winter day, is of course to bake a cupcake! When I think of spring, I think of bright yellow lemons and fluffy, white meringues and rich, creamy buttercreams. These tasty, moist lemon cupcakes I made today with the lightest lemon kissed buttercream frosting swirling on top of them is exactly what sunshine tastes like. And exactly what I needed to see today when the only swirling going on are the snowflakes falling from the sky and the only sunshine to be seen! I made the entire recipe in miniature cups(72) but I needed to double my frosting recipe. Below I have given you the adjusted frosting measurements. It is divine!
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup milk
2 Tbsp. lemon zest
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
1. Preheat oven to 325° degrees.
2. Line cupcake pan with mini baking cups. Set aside.
3. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until fluffy, about 4 minutes.
4. Add the eggs, one at a time until the mixture becomes creamy.
5. In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking soda and salt together. Whisk to combine.
6. Alternately add the dry ingredients and the milk until completely incorporated.
7. Add the lemon zest and fresh lemon juice. Mix batter for an additional minute. Mixture should look light and fluffy.
8. Divide the batter among the cupcake liners and bake for 17 to 23 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean.
9. VERY IMPORTANT to allow cupcakes to cool completely before frosting.
Lemon Kissed Buttercream Frosting
4 oz. (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
2 3/4 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. whole milk
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1. With an electric mixer, cream the butter and salt for about 30 seconds.
2. Add half of the powdered sugar and the milk to the butter and beat again until combined. Scrape down the bowl.
3. Add the remainder of the powdered sugar, vanilla, and lemon juice. Beat until combined. Scrape down the bowl again.
5. Beat on high speed for 5-6 minutes or until the frosting is fluffy. Add Wilton gel "Yellow" in small amount to achieve desired pastel color.
6. It is preferable to use the frosting on the same day you make it, but it can keep in the refrigerator for 3 days if tightly wrapped. Make sure and stir the buttercream well before using to get the air bubbles out of the frosting and then pipe onto completely cooled cupcakes.