Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Mini Lemon Cupcakes

In my last few days at home, i'm trying to pack up and get ready for Boston, but i also just had to take advantage of my parents' garden! we've got a great lemon tree, an orange tree, a couple of apple trees that aren't quite bearing ripe fruit yet, and some tomato and zucchini plants.  I had my eye on some really nice zucchinis that we just harvested, but alas, my mom decided to use them for something else:(
luckily for me, our lemon tree consistently provides us with a steady supply of lemons during the year, and i didn't feel bad stealing a few for these cupcakes.  also, i really, really wanted a nice snack for my afternoon tea. 

this was the first time i used lemon zest in a recipe, so zesting was kind of a challenge.  growing up, my mom made me grate carrots, and i always thought it was a pain. i had a similar experience this time.  the good news was that i only needed a small handful of lemon zest, so it didn't take me too long:)

i was pleasantly surprised with how quickly these little cupcakes baked.  In just 15 minutes, they were approaching a lovely golden brown color in the oven.

Even though the cupcakes looked (and tasted) really good alone, i wanted to add a little frosting to make them even more delicious and pretty. after all, they were supposed to be a fancy tea snack!

swirly swirly swirly swirly swirly

Mini Lemon Cupcakes (adapted from Ina Garten)

  • 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 handful grated lemon zest 
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting:
6 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/3 cup confectioners' sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Cream together the butter and sugar until mixture is light and fluffy.  Add in the lemon zest and the eggs, one at a time.  In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt and set aside.  Mix together the buttermilk, lemon juice, and vanilla extract in a third bowl.  Add the flour and the buttermilk mixture to the creamed mixture, alternating between the two.  Spoon the batter into a well greased cupcake tin, and bake for 13 to 15 minutes, or until golden brown.

To prepare the frosting, combine the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla extract.  Using an electric mixture, add the confectioners' sugar in small amounts, and mix at high speed until frosting is at the desired consistency.  Frost cupcakes when they are completely cool.



  1. That looks mouth watering... oh wait a sec... u made that a mile away from where I live and i didn't get to taste it? :)

  2. haha my apologies. i think we had some left over even after i came back to boston!