I don't normally post cupcake recipes because I've really never found a cupcake recipe that checks all my boxes. I know for most people it's the frosting that matters. But for me, the cake has to be as much a winner as the frosting.
What's a good cupcake, you'd ask me. For starters it has to be moist and flavourful. A light crumb that melts in the mouth and most definitely tasting au naturel. Basically, all in all, uber delicious.
Most of the times, you buy a cupcake because it looks so pretty. The swirl of the frosting, the pairings of the flavours, the bite-sizedness of the cake, it just somehow switches on a light in the head. But 8 times out of 10 you're eating a sub-par cupcake. Dry, tasteless and way too artificially flavoured that you'd much rather some sawdust than such mediocrity. Oh and the frosting, don't even get me started on it. Too buttery, too sweet, too well, disgusting.
But in the last couple of months, two friends gifted me two books that were all about cupcakes. Amrita gave me Lola's Forever, recipes from London's very fashionable Lola's Cupcake while Ruchica gave me the Hummingbird Bakery Home Sweet Home, the cookbook straight off Portobello Road's The Hummingbird Bakery.
Both the books had beautiful cupcakes. The photographs were delectable and every couple of weeks, I'd catch myself browsing through these books, wanting to make something anything from it.
As it happened, I had a batch of lemon curd leftover from the last time I'd made some lemon squares and about half a cup of frozen blueberries that were begging to be eaten.And just by chance I found my 6-piece muffin mould.
I knew what I had to do. I found the lemon cupcake recipes from both the books and decided to do a quick search about the pros and cons. I saw that a lot of people had done the comparison between Lola's and Hummingbird (and ofcourse Magnolia) but what tipped me in favor of trying the Hummingbird Cupcake was the fact that nearly everyone who had tried it had called it extremely moist. Plus it really used very little butter which was a win-win.
I halved the recipe, made a few additions to it and then ultimately ended up with a cupcake that had given a beautiful even rise, gorgeously light crumb and so very flavourful. It needed to be paired with something light, so I just whipped a bit of cream and folded in a bit of lemon curd into it to make a light and easy frosting.
The end result was a delicious cupcake and a recipe that's most definitely a keeper. No scratch that, the only one I'm going to need.
Lemon & Blueberry Cupcake with Lemon Curd Whipped Cream Frosting
Adapted from The Hummingbird Bakery Home Sweet Home
Makes 8 cupcakes
For the cupcake
120g plain flour
130g caster sugar
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
4 tblsp lemon juice
40g unsalted butter, room temp
1/2 tsp lemon zest
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp lemon extract
1/3 cup frozen blueberries
A pinch of salt
For the frosting
100 ml whipping cream
1/4 cup lemon curd. I used this recipe.
Blueberries to top
1. Line your cupcake tray with liners. Preheat the oven to to 170C (325F).
2. Put the flour, sugar, baking powder, lemon zest, salt and butter in a large bowl and beat on slow speed until you get a sandy consistency and everything is combined.
3. In a separate bowl add the milk, egg, vanilla extract, lemon extract and lemon juice together.
4. Add the wet mix to the dry mix, in two lots and mix till smooth about one minute. DO NOT OVERMIX.
5. Fill the cupcake till about 2/3 full. Divide the blueberries into the tray. This is so that the blue berries don't leave too much colour and you get an even amount of blueberries per cupcake.
6. Bake for about 18 to 20 minutes.
7. Meanwhile whip the cream until you get soft peaks and fold in the lemon curd. And let it sit in the refrigerator until you Leave the cupcakes to cool slightly in the tray before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
8. Frost. Top with remaining blueberries and then serve topped with additional lemon zest.
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