Triple Lemon Cupcakes
- 1 1/4 cups cake flour*
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 3/4 cup Imperial Sugar Extra Fine Granulated Sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Zest of 1 lemon, no white bitter pith
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 3/4 cup lemon juice (fresh, not bottled)
- 1 1/3 cups Imperial Sugar Extra Fine Granulated Sugar
- 5 large eggs
- 2 1/4 sticks (20 tablespoons) unsalted butter, very soft but NOT melted
- *Spoon & Sweep method: Use a spoon to fill measuring cup with flour until required amount is obtained. Scooping measuring cup directly into flour bag will firmly pack flour resulting in too much flour required for recipe.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Sift together flour, baking powder, and baking soda and set aside.
- Using a mixer with a whip attachment, mix eggs until completely blended. Add sugar and mix for about 3 minutes or until the mixture has well doubled in volume.
- Add salt, vanilla, lemon zest, oil, and one-third of flour and mix into batter, once combined add half of buttermilk. Add another third of flour and once mixed in add remaining buttermilk followed by remaining flour.
- Place 16 paper cups in a muffin tin and fill the cups a generous 3/4 full. Place in oven and bake for 18-20 minutes or until the center bounces back when lightly pressed with a finger. Let cool.
- To prepare lemon curd, in a non-reactive saucepan bring lemon juice and about half of sugar to a boil.
- In a separate bowl whisk eggs for 2 minutes until well combined and then quickly whisk in remaining sugar. Pour about half of boiled lemon juice mixture into the beaten eggs, whisk rapidly.
- Pour egg mixture into saucepan and whisk vigorously to a boil. Keep whisking constantly until thick bubbles form. Remove from heat and set aside. Do not add soft butter yet.
- Once mixture feels barely lukewarm (130°F) add half of soft butter using a rubber spatula. Stir until dissolved. Add remaining butter and mix until butter is dissolved. If the butter was a touch too cold, it will not properly dissolve. If so, place the bowl just about 5 seconds in a microwave oven and then stir for several minutes. Only if absolutely needed return it to the microwave oven. Do not overheat the mixture as the butter would melt and actually clarify and lose its ability to thicken curd properly.
- Set bowl into another bowl filled with ice cubes and do not stir it any longer until it is completely cold.
- Using a paring knife or an apple corer, from top to bottom, make a tunnel in the center of each cupcake.
- Fill tunnel with lemon curd.
- Frost cupcakes and create a small crater in center or pipe frosting in a ring fashion using a piping bag fitted with a large pastry tip.
- Fill center with remaining lemon curd.
- If desired sprinkle with lemon zest and decorate with a lemon slice.
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