I have this terrible habit of buying large quantities of ingredients and then deciding what I’m going to do with them. This is how I wound up with a large bag of lemons. In fact, I can’t even remember if I had any recipe ideas in mind when I bought them. I’ve mentioned my love of all things lemon before and thought I would make lemon cupcakes with lemon frosting, but then I found a recipe for lemon cupcakes with blueberry buttercream and thought they looked and sounded fabulous. I tweaked the recipe a little and the cupcakes were light, moist, and lemony. The cupcakes were good even without the frosting, but even better with the blueberry buttercream. Enjoy!
Lemon Cupcakes with Blueberry Buttercream
For the Cake
2 1/4 cups cake flour (I used Swan’s Down brand)
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/4 cups buttermilk, room temperature
4 large egg whites, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
lemon zest from three lemons (finely grated)
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon pure lemon extract
Getting Ready: Center a rack in the oven to 350 degrees F. Line cupcake tins with paper liners or spray with non-stick cooking spray.
1. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the milk and egg whites.
3. Place the sugar and lemon zest in the bowl of your mixer or another large bowl and rub them together with your fingers until the sugar is moist and fragrant. Add the butter and, working with the paddle or whisk attachment, or with a hand mixer, beat at medium speed for a full 3 minutes, until the butter and sugar are very light. Beat in the extracts, then add one third of the flour mixture, still beating on medium speed. Beat in half of the milk-egg mixture, then beat in half of the remaining dry ingredients until incorporated. Add the rest of the milk and eggs, beating until the batter is homogeneous, then add the last of the dry ingredients. Finally, give the batter a good 2-minute beating to ensure that it is thoroughly mixed and well aerated. Using a large scoop (about 3 tablespoons), distribute the batter between 24 muffin wells, filling each well 2/3 full.
4. Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until the cupcakes are springy to the touch and a toothpick inserted into the centers come out clean. Cool on wire rack.
For the buttercream
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 pound confectioners’ sugar, sifted
pinch of fine grain sea salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
zest of one lemon (finely grated)
½ cup fresh or frozen blueberries, pureed with the juice of one lemon
1. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter until fluffy. Slowly add in confectioner’s sugar, and continue creaming until well blended.
2. Add salt, vanilla, lemon zest and blueberry puree and mix until well combined. If buttercream is too thick, slowly drizzle in milk until you reach the desired consistency. Beat at high speed until frosting is smooth and fluffy.
*adapted from My Baking Addiction