I am the kind of person who gets really excited about changing seasons. In Summer, all I can do is think about how amazing Fall will be. When the Fall begins, all I do is imagine the upcoming snowball fights and movie watching I’ll do in Winter. While we human beings have ruined the changing seasons with global warming (especially this year), I still usually know and look forward to the exact date in which the seasons change. Since Winter was so late this year, when I heard that the first day of Spring was last week, I had a small internal freak out. I ran home and decided that as a celebration I had to make something fruity and Spring-ish. I asked my volleyball team, and they were in the mood for lemon flavors. So I decided to make VERY lemony vanilla cupcakes. I think we all went to lemon-heaven for a few minutes while eating them.
Every other time I’ve made cupcakes, I spend a long time searching for a recipe that consists of ingredients that I already have. I do this so I don’t have to do too much shopping. This time around, I decided that instead of finding a recipe that conforms to my needs, I would choose the most highly rated recipe and buy all of the ingredients. This was a COMPLETE success. The cupcake was so good that it didn’t need any frosting. It’s definitely worth taking the extra trip to the grocery store to buy the cake-flour and buttercream.
Enjoy your first taste of spring!!
1¼ cups cake flour (If you don’t have cake flour and don’t wanna buy it, all-purpose flour works, it just won’t be AS delicious)
1¼ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
2 large eggs
¾ cup sugar
1½ tsp pure vanilla extract
½ cup canola oil
½ cup buttermilk
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a cupcake/muffin pan with cupcake liners.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the cake flour (or all purpose flour), baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set flour mixture aside.
- In a large bowl, beat in the 2 eggs until combined (20ish seconds).
- Add sugar and continue to beat on medium speed (30 seconds). Add vanilla and oil and beat on medium speed (1 minute)
- Reduce mixer speed to medium/low and slowly add about half of the flour mixture. Add half of the buttermilk, then the rest of the flour mix and the rest of the milk. Beat until just combined and smooth, scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl. The batter should be thin.
- Pour batter into a lined muffin pan. Fill to about ½ full for flat topped cupcakes. For a rounder, muffin life top fill 3/4 full.
- Bake for 12 -14 minutes at 350°F. Let them cool in the pan for a couple minutes, then remove and let sit until cooled.
- Once the cupcakes are cooled to room temp, cut a hole in the middle of each cupcake or use corer. Fill with lemon curd. Then pipe on the lemon frosting.
- In a medium saucepan, combine 3/4 fresh lemon juice, 1 tbsp lemon zest, 3/4 cup sugar, 3 eggs, and 1/2 cup (one stick) butter.
- Cook over medium-low heat until thick enough to hold marks, and first bubble appears on surface, about 6 minutes. Don’t let boil.
- Refrigerate until cool. It will continue to thicken as it cools.
Lemon Buttercream Frosting
- Beat 1/2 cup butter or margarine until soft in a medium sized bowl.
- Beat in 1 package of confectioners’ sugar (1lb) with 1/2 tsp lemon rind, dash of salt, 3 tbsp lemon juice, 1 tbsp milk and drop of yellow food coloring.
- Continue beating until smooth and spreadable. For thicken frosting add less milk or more sugar. For thinner, add more milk or less sugar.