another use for lemon curd…

I made a batch of lemon curd for a birthday cake and had some left over… rather than let it go to waste I started thinking about making a batch of cupcakes. Chocolate cupcakes filled with lemon curd and topped with a meringue buttercream frosting. Sounds pretty darn good eh? I think so too ;0)

I ended up “blog surfing” and came upon my new favourite blog (check out cup cake blog from my list) – which unfortunatley has been shut down – BUT I was able to check out her archives and found some delightful recipes (already excited to try them)… here is my twist on her stuffed chocolate cupcakes – she used strawberries and cream and I used lemon curd… :0)

These cupcakes have just a bit more assembly time required compared to regular frosted ones… but really, if I can do it – so can you!

Chocolate stuffed lemon curd filled, lemon meringue buttercream frosted cupcakes (is that a title or what!?)

1/4 c. butter, softened
1/4 c. + 2 tbsp brown sugar
1 egg
1/4 c. + 2 tbsp whole wheat pastry flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp vanilla salt
1/4 c. dark chocolate cocoa
1/4 c. milk
1/2 tsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line 8 cupcake molds with paper liners (fill the remaining 4 molds with water so that you don’t burn your tin).

In a large bowl – cream the butter. Once it has loosened up, add the sugar and beat together until fluffy (about 2 minutes – the sugar will lighten up a bit). Add the egg and beat well.

In a smaller bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and soda, the salt and the cocoa.

In a third bowl, combine the vanilla and the milk together.

Incorporate 1/3rd of the dry mix into the butter/sugar mix – beat to combine. Then add 1/2 the milk mix to the batter, and continue adding the dry and wet ingredients (alternate) until everything is well blended.

With your mini ice cream scoop divide the batter among the 8 liners (about 2 scoops each).

Bake for 22 minutes. Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool completely.

The rest of my recipes are for full batches… far to much of both the frosting and the curd for just 8 cupcakes – you can either divide them, or do like me… and bake lots of lemon meringue buttercreamed treats for a week :0)

Lemon Curd
3/4 c. sugar
3 tbsp cornstarch
2 tbsp all purpose flour
1 1/2 c. water
3/4 c. lemon juice
2 tsp lemon zest (the zest of an entire lemon)
2 tsp butter
4 egg yolks, lightly beaten

In a medium saucepan (over medium heat), whisk together the sugar, cornstarch, flour, water, lemon juice, and lemon zest. You want it to thicken, so make sure that you stir it well until it gets to that boiling point.

Remove it from heat and stir in the butter. Take about 1/2 c. of the mixture and add it to the egg yolks – it’ll temper the yolks and keep them from curdling. Whisk the egg yolks well – once they’re smooth, return to the pan and whisk constantly – you’ll know it’s done when the top starts bubbling. Remove from heat and chill completely (in an airtight container in the fridge overnight is a-ok).

*Remember that this amount of curd was made to be the filling for a 3 layered cake – and I still had enough left over for 8 cupcakes… or it’ll fill a pie crust/ tart

Lemon Meringue buttercream frosting
4 egg whites
1 c. white sugar
pinch of vanilla salt
1 c. butter, softened
1 tbsp lemon juice

In a large glass bowl over a pot of simmering water (about 1 inch of water) place the egg whites, sugar and salt. Take your hand mixer and start beating! This is about a 5 minute process of contineous mixing – you want to make sure that the eggs don’t cook – so make sure that the water doesn’t touch the bowl.

Remove from the heat and continue to whisk until the meringue doubles in volume.

Add the lemon juice. Now start adding the butter, 1 tbsp at a time and continue to beat with your mixer. You want each spoonful of butter to be incorporated before you add the next one. Once everything is well combined, cover and allow to chill for at least 30 minutes in the fridge.

*Note – this was also used to completely cover a three layered cake and there was enough left over for these cupcakes. The frosting will keep in the fridge in an airtight container for up to two weeks.

Now to assemble ;0)

Using a sharp knife, make an X in the middle of each cupcake (don’t go too far down). Now, using your pastry bag, add a small pastry tip to it and fill it with your lemon curd.

Dig the tip into the centre of the cupcake and start filling – the curd will come out of the top – no worries, you’re covering it with frosting.

Remove the tip – and repeat 8 times. Now grab that frosting and slather it ontop the top of each cupcake. It’s a light frosting (it actually ressembles whipped cream) so pile it on!

Next time I’ll scoop more of the centre out so that I get a really good doople of lemon in the centre – this method seems to only allow for a thin line of it… but leason learnt right? That’s part of the fun in the kitchen, you never know what you’ll end up with (and everyone at work still enjoyed them)!

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