Lemon Meringue Cupcakes

Ok, yesterday’s post was all about the lemon curd and it’s tangy buttery goodness. That was the warm up for today’s post! I tested (and re-tested) multiple vanilla cupcake recipes and this is THE one. Light and spongy and ultra vanilla-y! We are gathering for Easter with friends and I wanted to bring something sweet for the kiddos but a bit more refined for the grown ups. This cupcake is going to be a crowd pleaser no matter what the ages! The classic flavors of lemon meringue pie in a single serve cake.

I try to post recipes that are simple, but delicious. This fits the bill, even though there are a lot of steps. The ingredients are real and they are basic. You know me, I’m a mom on the move. I work hard and I play hard and some times you need to make a cake from the gottdamned box. If that’s your current state, do it and don’t apologize. If you’re feeling game, then follow along and let me know how you liked ’em!

You will need the following:

Cupcakes

  • 1 1/4 cups cake flour *use cake flour for these. It will result in a cake that’s a bit lighter.
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla bean paste or pure vanilla extract *the paste will give you the beautiful seeds running through your batter as well as a more prominent vanilla flavor. These will still be delicious without it, though! IMG_7063 (1)
  • 1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk *you can sub butter milk for 1/2 cup milk with 1/2 tsp white vinegar. Allow it to sit for 5 minutes before using.
  • 1/2 cup lemon curd Recipe Here

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 °F and line a cupcake/muffin pan with cupcake liners.
  2.  In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 1/4 cups cake flour (or Canadian flour), 1 1/4 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp baking soda and 1/2 tsp salt. Set flour mix aside.
  3.  In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat 2 eggs with the whisk attachment on medium speed (15-20 seconds).
  4. Add 3/4 cup sugar and continue to beat on medium speed (30 seconds).
  5. Add vanilla bean paste and oil, beat another minute.
  6. Reduce speed to medium/low and add half of the flour mixture. Next add half of the buttermilk, then the rest of the flour mix and the rest of the milk. Beat until just combined avoid over beating. Scrape the sides of the bowl down as you go.
  7. Fill muffin liners about halfway and bake 15-18 minutes or until the cake springs back when you tough it. Remove from pan and allow to cool completely.

Meringue Frosting

  • 3/4 cup granulated white sugar
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 2 tbsp cold water
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Place all of the ingredients in the metal bowl of your stand mixer. If you don’t have this type of mixer, a metal or glass bowl will do. You will just need to make sure it fits over another pot or sauce pan for a double boiler.
  2. Place the bowl over a pan of boiling water and whisk continuously until all of the sugar is melted. The liquid should look frothy and ideally, should reach temps of 165-170 degrees. IMG_7065 (1)
  3. Remove from pan and beat with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form. This could take 10-12 minutes or more. The peaks must be stiff or your frosting will fall. Once beaten to desired consistency, place in the fridge until ready to use.

Assembly

  1. With a pairing knife, cut a small circle in the middle of each cupcake and gently scoop it out about half way into the cake. IMG_7069 (1)
  2. Pipe or spoon a generous amount of lemon curd into each hole. My gramma taught me to pipe small amounts using a cone made out of waxed paper. Easy and efficient!
  3. Next, pipe the frosting onto your cupcakes in a heavenly swirl. You can use a textured tip or the coupler will work too! IMG_7071 (1)
  4. Lastly, hit these bad boys with a kitchen torch for that perfect brûlée! No worries if you don’t have a torch on hand (though you can buy them for about twenty bucks), you can pop these on the lowest rack of your oven and turn the broiler on. If you do it this way DO NOT LEAVE THE OVEN!!!! They can go from touched to torched in about two seconds. IMG_7072 (1)

These cupcakes should travel well and will be a delight to anyone lucky enough to get a bite! Swearing Mom out.

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