Monday, May 14, 2012

Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes

People who don't like chocolate are strange, strange birds.  I know one such weirdo and for his birthday, I had to think of something yummy that was chocolate-free.   Since I was transporting them to the heart of Adams Morgan and I knew that I'd need to be able to bob-and-weave in between all the going out crowd, so I turned to my trusty cupcake transporter from Lizzie.  You could practically play football with this thing and all of the cupcakes would still be perfectly pristine after.  Chocolate-free, but interesting cupcakes...Hmm....  So I went with Strawberry Lemonade.  Now, strawberry cake and lemon frosting OR lemon cake and strawberry frosting.  I put this decision is Mark's capable hands and he pick the former, so that is what I did.  The cupcakes are light, fruity, and very moist.  The frosting is not super sweet and balanced by the sour lemon.  The little strawberry slice on top rounds it out perfectly.  I loved these little beauties.
Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes (makes 2 dozen)
1 package strawberries
3 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup milk
2 tsp. vanilla
2 sticks butter
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
4 egg whites
3 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
1 stick butter
1/4 cup of milk
1 lemon (zest and juice)

1.  In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda and salt.
2. Blend the strawberries in the blender with vanilla and milk until smooth.
3. On high speed, cream the butter and the sugar together until smooth and creamy.
4. Add the eggs and egg whites and continue to whip until well combined and fluffy.  Then turn down to low speed and alternate adding flour and strawberry blend until they are both incorporated.
5. Divide the batter between 24 paper cups.
6.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes until cooked through but still moist.
7.  Cream together the very soft butter and confectioner sugar.  Add the lemon zest and juice and continue to whip together until incorporated.  Add in the milk slowly while continuing to whip together until the frosting has the proper consistency.  I like to put the frosting in a large freezer bag to pipe it onto the cupcakes.
8.  When the cupcakes are fully cooled, frost the strawberry babies with the lemon frosting.
9.  Slice any remaining strawberries into small slices and put them in a Tupperware or baggie until your are ready to serve.  They will begin to bleed their juices a little and not look as pretty after a while so wait until the end to top them.  Still just as good, though!
10.  Top the cupcakes with the berries and serve.

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