Lemon Curd Cupcakes with Blueberry Cream Cheese Frosting

10.27.2012



Innovate on a cupcake. That is Julie´s, from Willow Bird Baking, challenge for this week. I sat there thinking how not up my alley this was. Just any cupcake? How do I narrow it down? Then she added baking according to the season we´re on now.
I´m happy to be having a few incredible spring days. After a lot of shower and humid days, we´re having clear skies, perfect weather, the kind of days you want to last and last. Really. That´s the feeling. 


I´m no cupcake baker. I´m all for bundt and layer cakes. So this was a real challenge. Lemon immediately came to mind, but then what? Fresh blueberries, that are popping up plump and dark, with the first sweetness in them. Not a new flavor combination idea, but the fresh berries in the frosting looks so pretty. I mean, cupcakes have to have some sort of prettiness to them.
The cake part has some white chocolate, which really makes them moist and deepens tremendously the flavor of vanilla.


Ever since I closed the coffee shop, I suddenly realized that the more I bake the more everything will just lie around the house, taking up counter space and even living room space. So I´m starting a list of happy takers of baked goods. One of those recepients, until they get sick of eating sweet things or put on a few pounds and start seeing me as the evil baker, is one of my weavers, you know, from my now only job. So I made half the batch the way you see them here, and the other half filled with dulce de leche and topped with melted chocolate. I didn´t photograph them because they are ridiculously simple, not even a ganache involved. But it goes to show that this cake recipe admits endless flavor combinations.


The fresh blueberries in the frosting are made by processing them and adding a tablespoon of lemon juice and water. If you have frozen blueberries, you don´t need to add liquid, the ice will melt and be perfect. And they give the cream cheese frosting the most wonderful lilac color.
I like this frosting, I really do. Can´t have a carrot cake without it. But in cupcakes it tends to be too sweet. It´s all about the ratio of cake and frosting. That´s why I don´t particularly eat cupcakes. But the lemon curd cuts nicely through it and the extra blueberry puree spooned on top, adds another sharp and fresh note.
I think they are perfect for spring. And my happy testers agreed.


WHITE CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES
from The Buttercup Bake Shop Cookbook, by Jennifer Appel

Ingredients
½ cup chopped white chocolate
½ cup water
2 ½ cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 ½ cups sugar
4 large eggs, separated
1 cup buttermilk or plain yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line 24 muffin molds with paper cups.
Over a pot with boiling water, melt chocolate and water. Reserve.
In a large bowl, with an electric mixer, beat butter until smooth. Gradually add sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks, one at a time, a mix until well combined. Add vanilla.
Add dry ingredients in three additions, alternating with buttermilk in two additions.
In a clean bowl with dry, clean beaters, beat egg whites until soft peaks form. With a spatula add to the cake batter in two or three additions, mixing gently until no streaks of white remain.
Carefully fill muffin cups to ¾ of their capacity.
Bake for about 30 minutes, until springy and tester inserted comes out clean.
Let cool completely on wire rack.

LEMON CURD
from Flour, by Joanne Chang

Ingredients
1 cup fresh lemon juice
¼ cup unsalted butter
2 Tbs cream
4 eggs
2 egg yolks
1 cup sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
A few drops vanilla extract

Directions
In a medium heavy saucepan, heat lemon juice, butter and cream, just below the boiling point.
In a large bowl mix to blend eggs, yolks and sugar. Gradually add hot lemon mixture, mixing well. Transfer the mixture back to the saucepan and stir constantly over medium heat until it thickens and leaves a path in the back of the spoon. Be careful not to burn the bottom.
Remove from heat, add salt and vanilla and let cool. Cover and refrigerate. It keeps for 5 days refrigerated.


BLUEBERRY CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

Note: if using frozen blueberries omit the water

Ingredients
1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
1 Tbs water
1 Tbs lemon juice
1 cup butter, at room tº
2 cups cream cheese, at room tº
3 to 4 cups confectioners´ sugar

Directions
Process blueberries with water and lemon juice. It will take a few minutes.
In a large bowl mix butter and cream cheese. Beat until very smooth. Add 10 Tbs of the blueberry purée.
Add 1 cup sugar and beat well. Keep adding confectioners´ sugar, ½ cup at a time until the frosting is thick enough to spread. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

To assemble cupcakes:

With a small spoon or melon ball scoop, take out a piece of cake the size of a small walnut. Discard. Pipe or spoon some of the cold lemon curd, filling the hole completely.
Using a piping bag with a wide, plain tip, pipe the frosting on top of the cupcakes.
To serve, spoon some extra blueberry purée on top of the frosting.



11 comments:

  1. Dulce de leche cupcakes? Wonderful!

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  2. You've channeled my favorite flavors into a cupcake! Lemon & blueberry. (And the dulce de leche cupcakes sound pretty awesome too).

    I constantly struggle with having too many leftovers around when I bake. I would probably bake more if that weren't the case :-(

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  3. The blueberry sauce on top is just perfect!

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  4. Mmmmm...blueberry cream cheese frosting. Brilliant! Oh the possibilities of cakes and cupcakes to use it on. And this combo with the lemon is a wonderful one for sure.

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  5. I want these. Like, I'd give an arm for one right now.

    Also, GORGEOUS photos!

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  6. What delicious treats my friend, I would love one right now :D

    Cheers
    CCU

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  7. Paula, you certainly made very pretty cupcakes! They would be just the thing to make for my 10-year-old daughter (it is her Birthday tomorrow) - the flavor combination sounds "bright", not too sweet and they look wonderful!

    P.S.: Sorry to read that you closed your Café but that probably means I will get to see a lot more of the wonderful fabrics that you make - looking forward to it!

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  8. Those cupcakes look amazing! I adore lemon curd, but only homemade lemon curd:-) Love the idea of stuffing a delicious cupcake with loads of lemon curd, YUM! The blueberry cream cheese is a great flavor combo! Hugs, Terra

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  9. i go away for a long weekend, and look at everything you've cooked! you've been so busy.
    i love lemon curd - just on a spoon, straight form the jar! and yes, i agree with terra - it has to be homemade.

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  10. You and I have already discussed out love of blueberries and lemon together. Other than YUM, what more can I say? ~ David

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  11. These are absolutely gorgeous!
    As for why I learned sign language, it's always something that's interested me! When I found the option to learn online on top of my other school work, I jumped at it! It's been so rewarding, and loads of work! I start my 3rd semester soon :)

    ReplyDelete

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