Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Lemons, Lemons, Lemons Cupcakes

When I first set about making these yesterday, I did so without the intent to blog about them, since originally I was going to be doing a vanilla cupcake with water icing: nothing fancy.  However, they turned into the cakes they are now as I went along and I ended up with something a bit more interesting, if still fairly simple.

These were made for my fiancĂ©, who has been getting some nasty back to back shifts the last couple of weeks (we're talking finishing at 10pm then having to be in again for 6:30am the next day with a 6 mile cycle to get there).  He mentioned over the weekend that he likes taking my baking to have with his lunch/dinner because it cheers him up but obviously there haven't been any cakes for him to do so.  So I wanted to make him some, and I did.

Like I said, they started conceptual life as vanilla cupcakes.  I instead turned them into lemon ones since he likes lemon.  I then thought I'd put lemon buttercream in the middle and found I had just enough icing sugar to manage it.  But what to top it with, having run out of icing sugar?  Well, I was also making biscuits at the same time, which were to have an orange cream inside, so I pinched some of it before flavouring and made it lemon.  It is then topped with flakes of white chocolate.

He likes them, though it turns out I didn't use enough lemon extract in the sponge.  I discovered that when I ate the leftover sponge from coring out the middles.  I'll amend it in the recipe.  His favourite bit is the buttercream middle.

Recipe - makes 6

  • 75g/2.5oz butter
  • 75g/2.5oz caster sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 90g/3oz self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp lemon extract
  • 25g/1oz butter
  • 50g/2oz icing sugar
  • 1 tsp lemon extract
Lemon Cream Topping:
  • 50g/2oz white chocolate
  • 30ml/1fl.oz double cream
  • 1 tsp lemon extract 
  • Yellow Food Colouring
  • 1 square white chocolate, finely chopped for decoration
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4 and line a six hole muffin tin with cases.
  2. Beat the butter and the sugar together until light and creamy.
  3. Add the egg and the lemon extract and beat in.
  4. Sift in the flour and fold into the mixture.
  5. Distribute evenly amongst the cases and then bake for about 20 minutes, until risen and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.  Leave to cool on a wire rack.
  6. Make the buttercream by combining the butter, icing sugar and lemon extract together and beating until it is smooth and creamy.
  7. Cut out holes in the centre of each cake, either with a knife or an apple corer.  Reserve the top of the 'cores' to use as lids.
  8. Fill the holes with buttercream and then put the 'lids' back in place.
  9. Put the cream in a small saucepan and bring to a boil.
  10. Remove and add the white chocolate, stirring until the chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth.  Add the colouring and mix in.
  11. Spoon on top of the cakes.
  12. Top with a sprinkling of white chocolate flakes.

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