Recipe Note: Moderate
makes 12 cupcakes
1/4 pound (1 stick) butter - room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs - room temperature
3 lemons - zested
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 cup buttermilk - room temperature
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 block of cream cheese - room temperature
1/2 stick of butter - room temperature
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar - sifted
1/2 tsp vanilla
Preheat the oven to 350 F and prepare a muffin pan with paper liners.
To make the cupcakes, cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes). With the mixer on medium speed add the eggs, one at a time, and then the lemon zest. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Separately, combine the lemon juice, buttermilk, and vanilla. Then add the flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately, beginning and ending with the flour. Spoon the mixture into the pans, smooth the tops, and bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool.
To make the frosting, combine the cream cheese and butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy. Then add the powdered sugar and vanilla first on slow and then on medium until smooth and (just) combined.
To frost the cupcakes, use a frosting bag with one corner cut-off. Pipe the frosting into a small swirl on each cupcake. Then add the fresh lime zest and candy lemons and limes.
photo by: Doreen Corrigan