Monday, August 31, 2009

Flavor of the Month

The Flavor of the Month at Bridget's Bake at 350 is. . . . . . . . lemon! I love lemon! When it comes to desserts, I prefer lemon to chocolate. Sacrilege, I know! These were so light and refreshing and crunchy. Crunchy? Yep, these lemon filled cupcakes are topped with a yummy vanilla meringue! My kids just loved crunching into them. . . outside. With the doggy in attendance. Lucy likes meringue too!

Lemon Meringue Cupcakes

Start with the meringues as they will take about 4 hours to finish. They keep well, so you can do them the day before, or even just the evening before and leave them in the oven overnight!

For the Meringues:

3/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup superfine sugar (buzz some sugar in your food processor for about 5 minutes!)
4 egg whites, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat the oven to 175 degrees. Line a sheet pan with parchment.
Sift together powdered sugar, superfine sugar, and salt.
In the bowl of your mixer, whisk the eggs and cream of tartar.
Mix until frothy, then turn the speed up to medium high and whip to soft peaks.
Gradually mix in the sugar mixture and vanilla.
When the sugar is incorporated, turn the speed up to high and whip to stiff peaks.
Spoon into a piping bag fitted with a large tip and pipe onto the parchment paper in a 'cupcake' shape.
Bake until dried and crisp, but not brown, about 3 hours.
Turn off the oven and leave the meringues in for another hour.
Place on top of finished cupcakes!

Vanilla Cupcakes
Adapted from Gesine at Confections of a Closet Master Baker

2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
5 eggs, room temperature
3 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 1/4 cups buttermilk, room temperature

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Line 2 muffin pans and one mini muffin pan with cupcake liners.
In the mixer whisk together the butter and sugar until very fluffy, about 5 minutes.
Add the eggs one at a time and incorporate fully before adding next egg.
Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.
With the mixer on low, add about a third of the flour mixture and mix well to incorporate
Stir the vanilla into the buttermilk and add about a third of the mixture into the batter.
Add another third of the flour mixture, mix to incorporate and add a third of the buttermilk mixture.
Add the last of the flour, incorporate, and add the last of the buttermilk.
Mix another 2 minutes.
(By the way, I am the Queen of Scrapertonia. I stop the mixer and scrape everything down every few minutes. Your recipe calls for X amount of butter, so you want X amount of butter in your batter, right? Not X minus the bits crawling up the side! No? So, scrape often!)
Fill the cupcake liners about 2/3 full of batter and bake for about 15 minutes, or until the cupcakes are lightly browned and spring back when lightly touched.
Cool thoroughly before filling.

Whipped Lemon Cream

1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup lemon curd

15 minutes before you're ready put your mixer bowl and whisk in the freezer to chill.
When you're ready fit the whisk into your mixer and add the cream, sugar and vanilla.
Mix slowly for a minute. (to avoid a mushroom cloud of sugar)
Beat mixture to almost stiff peaks.
Remove whisk and gently fold in lemon curd.
Spoon into piping bag fitted with a Bismark tip and pipe into cupcakes.


Dorothy said...

I love how the meringue is so huge! This is definitely going on my to-bake list, because I've never seen a lemon meringue cupcake before that had a baked meringue on top. Usually it's a soft meringue, toasted with kitchen torch (which I don't have). Your way keeps them crispy, which is a big plus for me. Thanks! :)

Sweet and Savory said...

A pretty cupcake and I bet a tasty one. I can't agree with you that lemon could be better than chocolate. Impossible.

Each has its place and lemon is great for the summer.

Bridget said...

These are just adorable! :)

thecookieshopinenglish said...

So pretty!

oneordinaryday said...

Mmmm... these sound delicious. I love how the meringue is perched on the cupcakes at such a jaunty angle! Great job!

Jennie said...

Dorothy, they're fun to eat this way :)

Sweet and Savory, I just prefer my chocolate in a solid, dense form, instead of a flavoring. Chocolate cheesecake, chocolate ice cream, meh. I do love chocolate cake and brownies though :)

Thank you all for stopping by!

Michelle said...

Wow this would be a perfect thing to make for my husband and father-in-law who both like to have lemon meringue pie for their birthday' gives them the same flavors but in a different way.