Category Archives: spring

blueberry lemon cupcakes

So I was invited to a fun dinner party with my friends, and I offered to bring a dessert. I like opportunities like this because it’s an excuse to try a new recipe without having to eat all of the results myself. A few months ago I came across some really pretty photographs of blueberry cupcakes with a gorgeous purple frosting and have been waiting to experiment with blueberries. I also really like the idea of putting blueberries in cupcakes. Normally I only think of using them in muffins when it comes to hand held treats, but the idea of adding them to cupcakes (especially with the addition of something lemony) seems particularly happy and summery.

slightly updated from this recipe

makes about 15 cupcakes

ingredients:

  • ¾ cup plus 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour, divided
  • ¾ cup cake flour
  • 1½ tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 8 tbsp. unsalted butter (1 stick), at room temperature
  • ¾ cup plus 2 tbsp. sugar
  • Zest of  1 lemon (divide in half and use other half in frosting)
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • ½ cup plus 2 tbsp. buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen (unthawed) blueberries
lemon frosting:
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Zest of ½ lemon (use same lemon from above)
  • Additional fresh blueberries, for garnish

directions:

Preheat the oven to 350˚ F. Line cupcake pans with paper liners. In a medium bowl, combine the ¾ cup all-purpose flour, the cake flour, baking powder and salt; whisk together and set aside. In a large bowl, combine the butter, sugar and lemon zest. Beat together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes with hand mixer. Beat in the eggs one at a time, blending well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and lemon juice. With the mixer on low speed, mix in half of the dry ingredients just until incorporated. Blend in the buttermilk. Mix in the remaining dry ingredients, beating just until incorporated. In a small bowl, toss the blueberries with the remaining 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour. Using a spatula, gently fold the berries into the cake batter. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared liners, filling each about ¾ full. Bake 18-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from pan immediately and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the frosting, combine the cream cheese and butter in a medium bowl. Beat on medium-high speed until well combined and smooth, about 2-3 minutes. You can also beat this with a spoon by hand. Mix in the lemon juice and lemon zest. Gradually beat in the confectioners’ sugar until totally incorporated, increase the speed and then beat until smooth. Frost cooled cupcakes as desired. You can experiment with different types of frosting bag tips or just simply frost them with a knife. I experimented by making flower shapes with a flat, basketweave tip and they came out very pretty I think. Garnish with fresh blueberries.

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Filed under cupcake, dessert, fruit, recipes, spring, summer

banana cake

so i was going through some old cookbook recipes again, and i came across an old-fashioned banana cake recipe that sounded perfect for Easter. it just seemed so cozy and classic and hopeful of spring. there are plenty of variations online, but this cake recipe comes from a clipping from an old newspaper that looks to be from the 1950’s by it’s yellowness. the only thing i updated was the frosting by using a cream cheese brown sugar recipe. in my mind that was just the perfect final cozy touch.

with cream cheese brown sugar frosting.

paper clipping recipe from a “mrs. burgess”

ingredients: (2 layer cake) 

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup mashed ripe bananas ( 2 or 3 bananas)
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tsp vanilla

cream cheese brown sugar filling/frosting:

  • 1 stick of butter (1/2 cup), room temperature
  • 1 8oz. brick of cream cheese, softened
  • 1 c. powdered sugar
  • 1/2 c. packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 c.  toasted chopped walnuts

directions:

preheat oven to 350°F. cream shortening and sugar. add eggs and beat until fluffy. sift together flour, baking powder, soda and salt; add to first mixture and mix for two minutes with electric mixer or 200 strokes by hand. add mashed bananas, buttermilk, and vanilla and mix. pour into two buttered and floured layer pans and bake 30-35 minutes. let cake cool completely before adding filling.

make filling/frosting by creaming together the butter and cream cheese. then beat in the powdered sugar and brown sugar and vanilla. sprinkle in a small handful of walnuts, and gently stir to mix.

place 3 or 4 squares of parchment or wax paper on the plate or display stand that you will serve your cake on. you can slide them from the cake when you are done frosting and ready to take pretty pictures of the finished cake. start by placing the bottom layer on the parchment paper, and frost a somewhat thin layer on it. then place the top layer over that. frost the top and sides of the whole cake. use your hands to press the rest of the walnut pieces against the sides of the cake, all the way around. store covered in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

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Filed under cake, dessert, fruit, holidays, recipes, spring, summer