This is a cupcake I’ve wanted to try for a long time! It’s very basic, but quite yummy. I used a sponge cake recipe, so the cupcakes are naturally low-fat (in a sponge cake, the only fat comes from egg yolks; there’s no oil or butter). The only alteration to the cake recipe I found in Better Homes and Gardens was to use Meyer lemons instead of regular lemons. This gave the cake a much sweeter taste, but they still have that good lemony flavor. I think they turned out really well. The meringue frosting ended up being pretty much the same as the one that I use to top my S’mores Cupcakes; perhaps I’ll have to reprise those and post that recipe soon! Any excuse to use a kitchen torch ;)
Meyer Lemon Sponge Cake
2 tsp. lemon zest
1/4 c lemon juice
1/4 c water
1 tsp. vanilla
1 c sugar
1 1/4 AP flour
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
1/2 c sugar
1. Separate eggs. Allow egg yolks and whites to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
2. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a medium mixing bowl beat egg yolks with electric mixer on high speed for about 5 minutes or until thick and lemon colored. Add lemon zest, lemon juice, water, and vanilla. Beat til combined. Gradually beat in the 1 cup sugar at low speed. Increase to medium speed; beat until mixture thickens slightly and doubles in volume.
3. Sprinkle 1/4 cup of the flour over the egg yolk mixture; fold in until combined. Repeat with remaining flour, 1/4 cup at a time.
4. Thoroughly wash beater. In a large mixing bowl, beat egg whiles and cream of tartar on medium speed until soft peeks form. Gradually add the 1/2 cup sugar, beating on high speed until stiff peaks form. Fold 1 cup of the beaten egg white mixture into the egg yolk mixture; fold egg yolk mixture into remaining egg white mixture. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full. Bake for 16-18 minutes or until the cake springs back when poked.
1 c sugar
3 tbsp. water
2 egg whites
pinch of cream of tartar
pinch of salt
1. In a small saucepan, combine the granulated sugar with the water and bring to a boil over moderately high heat, stirring constantly until the sugar has dissolved, 2 to 3 minutes.
2. In a large bowl of a standing electric mixer, beat the egg whites with the pinches of cream of tartar and salt until soft peaks form.
3. With the mixer at medium speed, carefully pour the hot sugar syrup into the egg whites. Continue beating the frosting until cool and billowy, about 5 minutes. Mix the frosting with the lemon zest and juice to taste.
Fill pastry bag and pipe onto cupcakes. Either use a kitchen torch to brown the frosting, or place under broiler until desired color is reached (less that one minute!) Enjoy :)