Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Lemon Cupcakes with Strawberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream
I was totally craving strawberry lemonade cupcakes a week ago and set out to find the perfect lemon cupcakes and fresh strawberry frosting.
The first cupcake batch I made was good but not quite what I was looking for. The cupcakes were dense and the lemon flavor was bit subdued. I tried again a few days later and found this recipe. It was a bit lighter than the first and brushing the tops with fresh lemon juice after baking helped add more flavor. I'm still looking for a really great lemon cake recipe though, so if you have one send it my way.
While the cupcakes were good, the frosting was AMAZING!!! I don't know why it took me so long to try a Swiss meringue buttercream (probably the whole egg white thing) but now I'm hooked. This frosting is so silky smooth and not sugary sweet tasting like a traditional (confectioner's sugar) buttercream. Plus, I loved the taste of the fresh strawberries in this frosting...perfect for this time of year when strawberry season is at it's peak.
One more look because I'm obsessed.
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups (16 ounces) sour cream
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in lemon peel and vanilla. Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with sour cream, beating well after each addition (batter will be thick).
Fill greased or paper-lined muffin cups with 1/4 cup of batter. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely. *Poke the top of the cupcake 3-4 times with a tooth pick. Then brush the top with fresh lemon juice*Frost cupcakes. Yield: about 2-1/2 dozen.
Source: Taste of Home
Strawberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream
1-1/2 cups (8 ounces) fresh strawberries, rinsed and hulled (6-8 big strawberries)
4 large egg whites
1-1/4 cups sugar
1-1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
Puree strawberries in a food processor and set aside.
Combine egg whites and sugar in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Whisk constantly by hand until the mixture is warm to the touch and sugar is dissolved (the mixture should feel smooth when rubbed between your fingers) and the temperature reaches 155 degrees.
Pour egg whites with sugar into a stand mixer fitted with whisk. Mix on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form about 10 minutes and the bowl is cool.
Switch to medium-low speed and add butter a few tablespoons at a time. Mix well after each addition. After all the butter has been added scrape down the bowl and switch to paddle attachment.
Continue beating on low speed until buttercream becomes smooth. Don’t worry if the buttercream starts to look curdled. Just keep beating until it comes together. Then add strawberry puree and beat until combined.
Source: Martha Stewart