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Thursday, June 27, 2019

Summer Sweets: Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes

Did someone say summer sweets? Yes, please! We’ll take all the summer treats we can get, and throw in some shimmering sunshine, good friends and laughter and we’re all set. With a mixture of these elements summer is sure to be a success. We recently had the chance to get into the kitchen and whip up a batch of Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes. This recipe is super simple and extremely kid friendly! They make the perfect dessert for a hot summer day. So grab your little ones, gather the friends and get cooking.

Our little bakers are wearing hair accessories by KNOT Hairbands. These classic pieces add the perfect touch of style to any clothing.

Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes
yield: about 12 cupcakes

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup butter, soft
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup whole milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 Tbs. lemon juice
1 Tbs. lemon zest

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350°F and add cupcake liners to muffin tins.
2. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
3. Using the paddle attachment on your standing mixer, cream together the butter and sugar on medium until light and fluffy. Add in eggs, one at a time, and mix until just blended.
4. Add in vanilla, lemon zest, lemon juice and milk and blend. Slowly add in dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Do not over mix.
5. Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups and bake for 18-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cupcakes comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Cool completely before filling and frosting.

Lemon Curd Filling
In a medium saucepan, whisk together until light in color:
3 large eggs
1/4 cup honey
grated zest of 1 lemon
Add:
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
6 Tbs. unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
Cook, whisking over medium high heat until the butter is melted. Then whisk constantly until the mixture is thickened and simmering gently for a few seconds. Using a spatula, scrape the filling into a medium sized mesh sieve set over a glass bowl. Stir in 1/2 tsp. vanilla. Let cool, cover and refrigerate to thicken.

Buttercream Frosting
4 cups powdered sugar
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temp
2-4 Tbsp. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
1 Tbs strawberry jelly
pink/red food coloring

In your standing mixer, beat together the powdered sugar and butter.
Then add the milk and vanilla and beat until smooth. Correct the consistency if needed by adding powdered sugar or milk. Once desired consistency is reached, add the jelly and food coloring.

To assemble the cupcakes:
Use a small paring knife to cut a small cone out of the center of each cupcake, about 1 inch deep. Spoon a small amount of lemon curd into the hole and replace the cone. Gently press the cone into place and smooth away any crumbs. Frost the cupcakes as desired. For these I used a large round tip and the swirl method. Hold your piping bag perpendicular to the cupcake. Start at the outer edge of the cupcake and pipe a circle around the outer edge. As you complete a full circle, move the piping bag slightly inward to create the next circle rotation. Continue piping, moving inward for three full rotations, plus a small one on top. Release the pressure and pull the bag away. **Make sure cupcakes are completely cooled, we rushed this step, which makes for runny icing.**

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