Know What Helps With Pulled Wisdom Teefs and a Broken Foot? LEMON!

30 03 2009
Lemon Meringue cures what ails ya. Like bourbon!

Lemon Meringue cures what ails ya. Like bourbon!

I am not making that up. It is a scientific fact. See, on the 20th, as I mentioned in the biscuits post, I got mah teefs cut out mah head. Then, 4 days later, I broke my foot. I’d like to tell you some rad story that involves kickboxing, Chuck Norris, and a gang of rabid aardvarks, but it’s not that exciting. Ahem. Anyway, when I discovered I could hobble around my kitchen long enough to make things, I vowed to myself (and some friends I had over) that I would make these delightful sounding lemon meringue cupcakes from ol’ girl Elinor Klivans. Ya HEARD!? My mom and dad say these are their favorite yet. I dunno about all that, but the lemon curd(ish) filling is UHMAYZING. These are a little time consuming, but pretty easy. And you might want to try sticking them in the broiler until the meringue browns rather than baking them again. But maybe it doesn’t matter because it all gets refrigerated anyway. WHO KNOWS? Not I. So, go make these! They’re good for spring.

Lemon Meringue Cupcakes from Elinor Klivans

Cupcakes (makes 1 dozen)

  • 1 1/4 cup AP flour
  • 3/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2/3 cup whole milk
  • 5 Tbl. unsalted butter, cut into 5 pcs.
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • a heaping tsp of lemon zest (not in the original, but it added something)
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Line cupcake pan with 12 paper liners.
  2. Sift flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl and set aside.
  3. Put milk and butter in a small saucepan and heat over low heat just until hot, about 150 F. Remove from heat.
  4. Meanwhile, mix eggs, egg yolk, and sugar on medium speed until thickened and lightened to a cream color, about 3 minutes. Add vanilla and almond extracts.
  5. On low speed, add the flour slowly. Slowly mix in the hot milk mixture until batter is smooth. Mix in that lemon zest!
  6. Fill the liners with a scant 1/3 cup of batter. Bake until tops feel firm, blahblahblah, about 20 minutes (don’t forget to rotate the pan).
  7. Cool cupcakes in pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to wire rack to cool completely (important!!).
  8. When they are cool, fill the cupcakes with the lemon curd (it can be warm or cold, so you can make it in advance if you want). I did the cone method, where you cut a cone shape out of the cake and plug it full of lemony goodness. You want a lot in there, and don’t worry about fucking up the tops – they’ll get covered by the meringue. But, you probably want to know how to make the lemon curd. So here we go:

Lemon Filling

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks (don’t trash the whites! You’ll need them for the meringue!)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 Tbl. cornstarch, dissolved in 1/4 cup water
  • 1 heaping tsp. grated lemon zest
  1. In a medium saucepan, heat the butter and lemon juice over medium heat until hot, about 130 F.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk eggs, yolks, and sugar together to blend them, then add the cornstarch. Whisking constantly, slowly pour the hot butter and lemon mixture into the egg mixture.
  3. Return mixture to saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, just until it comes to a boil and thickens, about 6 minutes. It will leave a path on the back of your spoon if you draw your finger across it, and will look clear rather than cloudy (trust me, you’ll know when it’s done.)
  4. Remove from heat, strain into a small bowl, and stir in the lemon zest. I let it cool for a couple of minutes and then filled the cupcakes with it. But, you can also press plastic wrap directly on the surface and refrigerate for 3 days, OR (with the plastic wrap on) put it in a freezer-safe container and freeze that shit for 3 months (it never really freezes, so you can spoon out as much as you want/need to your liking).

Meringue!!

  • 4 large egg whites (see? Told you.)
  • 1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  1. Beat egg whites and cream of tartar on low speed until foamy, about 1 minute. Beat on medium-high until soft speaks form, then start to add the sugar 1 tablespoon at a time.
  2. Beatbeatbeat until nice and stiff (heh). Using a metal spatula, swoop and swirl that shit on to the cupcakes with great bravado.
  3. Put the cupcakes on a baking sheet and put back into a reheated 350 F oven. Bake for 13-15 minutes until the tops are brown and delicious looking.
  4. Let cool for ONE HOUR, then bundle ’em up and put ’em in the fridge for at least 4 hours. YOU WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED. Enjoy, and prepare to get compliments from EVERYONE.

So, to recap: Make the cupcakes. While the cupcakes are cooling, make the filling. Fill the cupcakes after they’ve cooled. Make the meringue. Frost the cooled and filled cupcakes. Pop ’em back into the oven to brown the meringe. Let ’em cool again. EAT AND IMPRESS PEOPLE WIF YOUR SKILLZ.

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