There are just some things that are meant to go together…lemon and raspberry are two flavors that I just love together. When I was in business school, me and four of my girlfriends decided to take our holiday break and explore New Zealand and Australia together for five weeks. Leading up to our trip we had several dinners where we’d eat, drink too many glasses of wine and plan the trip. I’d come across a cake posting on Tastespotting that looked ridiculously good, so I decided for our next Australia dinner I’d make it. I found the original recipe here. It was a blueberry lemon cake, but I decided I’d sub in raspberries since I like those flavors together better. The result was so good my friends deemed it the facegasm cake. It’s become our go to treat when we get together now. While we are all spread out across the country now, we’ve done a good job this first year out of business school getting together every few months. Since I live in what is normally the frozen tundra, I knew that they needed to come visit me in the summer or I would never get them here.
A few weekends ago they all made it to Minneapolis. We had reason to celebrate as two of my friends were celebrating birthdays. I decided that we needed a cake and some cupcakes for the occasion. I wasn’t sure if the Lemon Raspberry cake would translate well into cupcakes or not, but I gave it a try. I halved the recipe since I had also made a cake, so that’s why some of the measurements seem a little unconventional. The result was just as good as the regular cake with built in portion control. Facegasms were had all around
Lemon Raspberry Cupcakes
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup fresh raspberries
1/8 cup sour cream
1/8 cup milk (I use skim)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/6 teaspoon pure lemon extract (just fill 1/3 tsp half full)
1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened about 20 minutes out of refrigerator
6 tablespoons of white sugar
1 large eggs
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line cupcake pans with cupcake liners. Sift dry ingredients into medium bowl. Transfer 1 tablespoon flour mixture to larger bowl. Add fresh raspberries and toss to coat them with flour. Set remaining flour mixture and blueberries aside.
Stir milk, sour cream, vanilla extract, lemon extract and lemon zest in small bowl. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar, until pale yellow and very fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in eggs one at a time, until well combined. Mix in flour mixture alternately with milk mixture, starting and ending with flour mixture. Stir until just combined. Gently fold in raspberries. Divide batter equally cupcake pan.
Bake until toothpick inserted into centre comes out clean, about 15-20 minutes. Cool in pans on racks for about 10 minutes, then take the cakes out and cool on wire rack.
Zesty Lemon Frosting
1/2 cup soft unsalted butter
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2 1/2 cups icing sugar (or 3 for sweeter version)
23 ml fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons whipping cream (35% cream)
1/4 teaspoon pure lemon extract
1 drop of yellow food coloring
Cream butter and lemon zest in bowl of electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment, about 3 minutes. Slowly add icing sugar, mixing on low speed for about 2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and beat on med-high for 3-4 minutes until very fluffy. If using food coloring add a drop or two, then beat until blended.
3 large egg yolks, strained
Zest of 1/2 lemon
1/4 cup lemon juice
6 tablespoons sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cut into pieces
- Combine yolks, lemon zest, lemon juice, and sugar in a small saucepan. Whisk to combine. Set over medium heat, and stir constantly with a wooden spoon, making sure to stir sides and bottom of pan. Cook until mixture is thick enough to coat back of wooden spoon, 5 to 7 minutes.
- Remove saucepan from heat. Add butter, one piece at a time, stirring with the wooden spoon until consistency is smooth.
- Transfer mixture to a medium bowl. Lay a sheet of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd to avoid a skin from forming; wrap tightly. Let cool; refrigerate until firm and chilled, at least 1 hour.