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Lemon + Meringue + Cream Cheese = Heavenly


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I went for an outreach event in school last night. The event was great... and as much as I'm suppose to spread word of the event and all... I'll stray a little and rave about the Lemon Meringue Cupcakes baked by one of the church members. It was fantastic.

Sweet, creamy with a hint of sourness, the flavours bursting in your mouth, made all the more satisfying with the pleasant surprise of lemon curd/ cream cheese filling in the middle of the cupcake. I still can't tell what it is... but well the moment I went home I searched for a recipe!! And me... being excited and unable to wait... abandoned my school work for the moment and decided to bake it this morning. This recipe is an adaptation of several recipes put together, plus my own changes and additions.. I had loads of fun piping the meringue and creating little spikey peaks!

Lemon Meringue Pie Cupcakes

Adapted from Culinary in a Desert and "Chocolate and the Art of Low Fat Desserts"

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For the cupcake batter

1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup self raising flour

1 tablespoon fresh grated lemon zest
3/4 cup granulated sugar
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup milk

To Make the Cupcakes

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. (180 degrees C)

In a large bowl, rub together the lemon zest and sugar with your fingers until the zest is evenly distributed and the sugar takes on a light yellow hue. Add butter and cream together until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla until combined. Add the dry ingredients to butter mixture alternating with the milk - beginning and ending with the dry ingredients.

Evenly divide batter between around 20 paper lined muffin cups (could be 24 depending on how big the muffin holders are) - they should be roughly half full.

Bake until cake springs back when lightly touched in the centre and is just beginning to get a golden hue. About 18 - 22 minutes. Remove and place cupcakes on a wire rack to cool completely.

Lighter Lemon Curd (adapted from Chocolate and the Art of Low Fat Desserts)

1/3 cup fresh lemon juice (u will need about 2- 3 lemons)
1 to 2 teaspoon lemon zest
5 tablespoons sugar
1 egg, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a small saucepan, over medium heat, dissolve sugar into lemon juice. Add zest. Lightly beat egg in a small/ medium bowl. Whisking constantly, slowly pour lemon/sugar syrup into the egg. Beat for 2 minutes (only 1 if you are using a mixer), then transfer back into the saucepan. Heat over low heat, stirring constantly, until it just starts to bubble at the edges. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Transfer to a small container and store in the fridge. Makes 2/3 cup.

This is what I did:

After making the lemon curd and cooling it in the fridge. I tasted it. Perhaps I added too much lemon zest... For someone who's not entirely fond of sourness.. I decided to add cream cheese to give it the extra punch. SO here goes... my experimentation with no specific measurements. I can only give you estimates. I used 1/2 of the lemon curd (above). Mixed it around with about 1/2 package of Philly's light cream cheese and added a little bit of sugar. Note: You have to keep tasting it to see what suits ur preference.

SO this was my filling for the middle of the cupcakes... instead of the ultra tangy lemon curd.

To make the meringue:

3 large egg whites
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup granulated sugar

In a large mixing bowl, whip egg whites and cream of tartar until foamy. Slowly add sugar, a tablespoon at a time, and continue whipping until egg whites hold stiff peaks when beaters are lifted.

To assemble the cupcakes:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. (200 degrees C)

Place cupcakes on a large baking sheet. Use a paring knife to cut out a small cone out of the center of each cupcake. Pipe about 1 to 2 tablespoons of the lemon curd into each cake (or in my case the lemon curd cream cheese thing). Pipe the meringue on top of the cupcake. Bake until the tops of the meringues brown, about 5 to 8 minutes.

Makes around 20 cupcakes!

Have fun! I get the kick out of recipes like these that have sooo many steps but you feel so good after that. Knowing you've created a work of Art :)


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Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
claralala
Feb. 21st, 2009 01:22 am (UTC)
I love it Mel! Thank you!!!
disordersarefun
Feb. 21st, 2009 02:48 am (UTC)
MEL THEY LOOK SOOOOO GOOD. *drools*
nqn.myopenid.com
Feb. 21st, 2009 12:59 pm (UTC)
I agree piping can be lots of fun! And I'm the same, if I have something I'm dying to make, nothing can stop me! :)
(Anonymous)
Feb. 21st, 2009 02:32 pm (UTC)
AHHHHHHHH
Yes i totally agree. It was HEAVENLY. >.
cookingupadream
Feb. 21st, 2009 02:37 pm (UTC)
Re: AHHHHHHHH
Thanks! :)
baseballbakingandbooks.com
Feb. 27th, 2009 08:22 pm (UTC)
Re: AHHHHHHHH
After reading your description I can totally see why you couldn't shake those cupcakes. They sound phenomenal!! I want one.....yours came out terrific. The meringue looks yummy!
~ingrid
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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