What’s a birthday without cupcakes? Jack’s Blueberry and Meyer Lemon Cupcakes.March 18, 2007
I’m happy to write this solo as my wife is currently recovering from the birth of our son. This morning, my wife gave birth to our son, Jack. As he was breached and came to us two weeks early via cesarean, Jack weighs in at a peanut sized 6 lbs 6 oz. The wife is recovering and we will be back to our thing very soon, including the wife commenting on desserts. So to prevent this being self-absorbed, and bragging about how awesome my son is (I mean my son is awesome, just look at the little pink blob), I want to provide you with a recipe.
Before Jack was born all I could think about is the types of things I’ll need to do as dad. When cooking one day, I thought cupcakes. There is perhaps no more ‘hip food’ then cupcakes. Magnolia Bakery, Ina Gartnen (a.k.a. the Barefoot Contessa), and many others have made their names on making cupcakes. Heck there are great cupcake blogs out there like Cupcake Bakeshop and 52 cupcakes. So, while I have no skill in this area like these folks, I know parenthood means birthdays, and childhood birthdays mean cupcakes.
So I give you my first foray into this childhood delight in honor of this happy birthday for us—Jack’s Blueberry and Meyer Lemon Cupcakes. While I know he’s on a strictly liquid diet for the next several months, and therefore cannot comment, this was inspired by my wife’s insatiable appetite for blueberries. At one point, my wife was eating enough blueberries I felt like I may end up mimicking Violet Beauregard’s father from Charlie & the Chocolate Factory, “I can’t have a blueberry for a daughter!!”
Luckily, fate spared me a little blueberry tinted son. But before he was even born, I was experimenting with combining my wife’s favorites with the fresh, delicious taste of meyer lemons. The topper, and apparently best feature when I was testing these on my wife’s coworkers, was the meyer lemon cream cheese icing. It is tangy, sweet, rich and smooth, perfect for the muffin-like yellow cake.
Finally, we were terribly excited for his arrival. Jack is going to change everything. Knowing this, the recipe was prepared in advance so we have no comments from him. Hopefully, he’ll feel free to tell his old man soon enough what he thinks (or maybe I don’t want to know). We’ll be back later this week as we start our adjustments from a duo to a trio.
Jack’s Blueberry and Meyer Lemon Cupcakes
Yield: 1 dozen
2 large eggs (room temperature)
1 1/2 cup flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter (room temperature)
1 meyer lemon (juice & zest)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. salt
8 oz. cream cheese
2 meyer lemons (juice and zest)
4 cups confectioners sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1. Preheat your oven to 350F. Using a non-stick spray, grease and coat muffin or cupcake pan. Add the paper or foil cups. Note, if you are using cups, the greasing is simply an insurance should you have issues with run over.
2. In bowl, add the flour, salt, baking powder. Whisk together and set aside.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the butter and sugar. Cream them together by beating on medium speed for about 3 to 4 minutes, or until the butter has lightened in both volume and color and the sugar seems to be uniform throughout. Add the eggs one at time while mixer is on slow speed. Add the second once the first is fully integrated. Add the meyer lemon zest & juice, vanilla and heavy cream. Mix until everything is integrated. Remove the bowl and hand fold in the flour mixture until mostly integrated.
4. Scoop out the batter into the cups. Press 4 to 5 blueberries into each dollop of batter. Bake for 25 to 30 min or until a tooth pick pulls clean from the cup cake. Let the cupcakes cool completely before frosting.
5. In the bowl of your stand mixer and using the whisk attachment, beat the cream cheese until fluffy and light. Add the zest and juice, vanilla extract, two cups of sugar. Beat until smooth. Add the remaining sugar ½ cup at a time until you get the proper consistency for the frosting. It should be thick but still pliable. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
6. Once the cupcakes have cooled completely. Frost by adding a large dollop to the top and center of the cupcake and then smoothing from the center by turning the cupcake in your hand and leaving the spatula or knife steady.. It should spread out from the top and out. Once frosted, you can garnish with zest and blueberries. Serve to screaming masses. Enjoy!