Monday, 10 November 2008

Lemon Meringue Cupcakes

Makes 12

I chopped and changed between two recipes for mine, so I'm leaving both sets of ingredients as they vary slightly.

Set One:
115g unsalted butter, at room temperature
100g caster sugar
2 eggs
115g self-raising flour

zest and juice of 1 lemon

Set Two:
110g self-raising flour

110g caster sugar
110g margarine, softened
1 tsp baking powder

2 large free-range eggs
grated zest of 2 large unwaxed lemons
1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

I primarily stuck to Set Two - only because I've made her cupcakes before and they were always excellent, I also followed her directions.

Preheat the oven to 170C/325F/Gas 3. Line a 12 hole muffin tin with cupcake cases.
Sift the flour and sugar into a large bowl, food processor or mixer. Add all the other ingredients and beat until light and fluffy.

I then reverted to the directions for the first set of ingredients and used the rest of the ingredients as follows:
3 tbsp lemon curd
150g caster sugar
2 egg whites

Spoon a good dollop of the mixture into each cupcake case and make an indentation in the centre. Drop a dollop of lemon curd, then top with the remaining cake mixture.
Bake in the oven for about 17 minutes until golden. Leave to cool.
To decorate, put the sugar and egg whites in a bowl and set over a saucepan of simmering water. Whisk constantly for about 5 minutes until the mixture is thick and glossy and stands in peaks. Use a piping bag fitted with a star shaped nozzle to pipe a whirl onto the top of each cake or swirl the meringue over the cakes using a spoon.
The meringue will firm up as the cakes sit - for soft meringue, leave for at least 30 minutes and for a firm set, leave for at least 3 hours.

*****
If and when I make these again, I wouldn't put the lemon curd in before the baking. It sank to the bottom, so you can't take the cupcake wrapper off as the curd is there. I'd go the route of the butterfly cake, cutting out some of the top, inserting the curd and replacing the top, then piping the meringue over that disturbance.
All that said. My I also add YUM! These rock. Clearly my piping skills need work, but who cares! :)

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