March 31, 2011

Lemon Cupcakes with Lemon Buttercream

I volunteered to make mini cupcakes for a church activity. I made the cupcakes and stored them unfrosted in the freezer a few days before. Then the activity was postponed, to be rescheduled, weeks went by, and it seems that event will not be held. At least I hope so because my husband and I ate all the cupcakes! At least we ate most of them unfrosted because it took me several days before I got around to making the frosting.

These lemony cupcakes are so dreamy. The lemon frosting is fabulous. I ate one paired with a strawberry, and that was even more fabulous. I highly recommend topping these with berries for a perfect spring treat.

Note this recipe makes 24 regular-sized cupcakes. Feel free to halve the recipe.

Lemon Cupcakes
from Our Best Bites

1 1/2 c. (3 sticks) butter
3 c. cake flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 c. sugar
5 large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
Zest of 2 lemons (zest the lemons before juicing)
4 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 c. buttermilk

Preheat oven to 325. Line 2 12-cup muffin tins with cupcake liners. Or grease a mini-muffin pan.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, 4-5 minutes. Don't go skimping here--you want the mixture to be almost white and super fluffy. This is absolutely essential to the outcome of the cake.

While butter and sugar are mixing, sift together flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in a medium bowl. Set aside. After butter and sugar have mixed sufficiently, With the mixer running, add eggs, one at a time, beating to incorporate after each addition. Beat in vanilla, lemon juice, and lemon zest.

With mixer on low speed, alternate adding flour mixture and buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture and beating until fully incorporated.

Using a standard cookie scoop, place about 2 scoops of batter into each muffin cup. Fill these almost to the top--due to the final texture, as these cupcakes won't have a curved crown.

Bake about 20-25 minutes (for mini cupcakes, bake 13-15 minutes)
or just until a toothpick inserted into the center of one of the cupcakes comes out clean. Don't overbake these even a bit, or they'll start to lose their delicious moisture. Remove from oven and cool completely. Frost with lemon buttercream and garnish with strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, or fresh mint leaves.

Lemon Buttercream

1 1/4 c. butter (2 1/2 sticks)
2 tsp. grated lemon zest
3 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
3 c. powdered sugar

Beat butter, lemon rind, and lemon juice in an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add powdered sugar, beating to spreading consistency. Makes 2 3/4 c.


Kristy said...

this is the 2nd or 3rd recipe of cake from scratch i've made, and clearly the best cake ever!! it is soo good!! i haven't even made the frosting yet and i almost don't want to!! however, if the cake is so good i'm curious about the frosting as well! :D

Denae said...

The frosting is super good too, especially if you love zesty lemon flavor.