Please join me in welcoming Holly, who is guest posting today to share her awesome Double Lemon Cupcake recipe with us! I can’t wait to give these a try!
Hello Heavenly Homemakers readers! My name is Holly. I am a Christian, a military wife and momma to an 18 month old son, and I am really excited to be sharing a recipe (or three) with you. The past year I have been learning about traditional foods; I have reinvented how I shop, cook, eat, and feel about food. The most recent milestone in this journey was birthday cake. Remember when Laura asked us to choose between chocolate and vanilla? Well, to celebrate my 24th birthday I chose option C.
I wanted a birthday dessert that satisfied my emotional desire for cake, but also fulfilled my sensible need to eat wholesomely. I knew that if I did not satisfy both halves I would be left either feeling like a whole wheat martyr or a big sugar-filled failure. Yuck. Blessedly, I found a happy medium with these sweet and tangy cupcakes.
Let me just say that I am normally very relaxed baker, I never sift. I fudge the temperatures and can be lazy with the mixing. But for this recipe, if I say sift I do mean sift. The same goes for temperatures and times. It may seem fussy for some of you, but the results are rewarding.
Double Lemon Cupcakes
3 c whole wheat flour
1 tbsp baking powder
½ tsp sea salt
1 c butter, room temperature
1 c orange blossom honey
4 large eggs, room temperature
the zest of 3 lemons (I recommend organic because you are consuming the peel), plus 2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 c buttermilk
Preheat oven to 325° F. Butter and flour the inside of two round cake pans or two dozen muffin tins. Zest the lemons (just the yellow part, try to avoid the white pith because it is bitter), you want this to be very fine. Sift the dry ingredients together and set aside. Add the lemon juice to the buttermilk.
Cream the butter and the honey until they are nice and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, until well mixed in. Add the zest and vanilla. Add the flour and buttermilk in three parts. Beat until just combined. Pour the batter into the prepped pans and bake until golden brown and they pass the toothpick test, 30-35 minutes for a cake, 25 minutes for cupcakes.
While the cakes are baking, mix up a nice batch of…
8 large egg yolks
Finely grated zest of 2 lemons
½ c plus 2 tbsp lemon juice (about 3-4 lemons)
½ c orange blossom honey
teeny pinch of salt, about 1/8 tsp
¾ c unsalted butter (10 tbsp or 1 ¼ sticks) cold, cut in pieces
Wisk together all ingredients except butter and salt in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. When the mixture registers 160° F on an instant-read thermometer and is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon, remove from heat. This should take about 8-10 minutes. If you don’t have a thermometer, just do what I did and use good quality eggs.
Remove pan from heat and add salt and butter, one piece at a time, stirring until smooth after each addition. Strain through a sieve. It is normal for small bits of cooked egg to strain out, don’t worry you did it right. :) Cover this with plastic wrap and let it cool in the fridge at least one hour.
Fill your cupcakes with lemon curd. You can use a pastry bag and large tip, or poke a hole with the wrong end of a wooden spoon and use a plastic baggie with a corner snipped off. Spread extra curd on top of the cupcake. If you’re making a cake, spread the lemon curd between the two layers. Then whip up your frosting.
Soft and Fluffy Frosting
8 egg whites
¾ c orange blossom honey
1 tsp vanilla extract.
Combine egg whites and honey in a large heat-proof mixing bowl (or the bowl for your stand mixer if you have one and it’s heat-proof) set over a pan of simmering water. Wisk rapidly for two minutes Make sure your water does not boil! You will end up with scrambled egg frosting and it will be gross. Cook this until it reaches 160° F on an instant-read thermometer (or if like me you don’t have one, use good eggs and cook for two minutes). Remove from the heat and beat on your mixer’s highest speed for until soft and fluffy, about 7-9 minutes. Beat in the vanilla. Use this frosting immediately.
I used (some of the) leftover curd to decorate the tops of some of the cupcakes. Or you could eat it with a spoon and not tell anyone there were leftovers. I won’t look.
Thanks Laura for letting me share my recipes with you and your readers!
Holly wanted me to be sure to let you know that the curd will keep in the fridge about 3 days, but it is best served in the first 24-36 hours, and the frosting should be used immediately after it’s made, because it will start to deflate after a few hours. It’s still edible for several days, but the quality goes down after 6-8 hours.
This post is linked to Works for me Wednesday.