Anyone need an excuse to chow down on cupcakes? It's the month for big holidays but December 15 might soon become your favorite: it's National Lemon Cupcake Day! Admittedly, there's no real verification naming this a national holiday. You won't get off work, the mail is still going to run, and there won't be any parades, but there will be an abundance of lemon cupcakes and I think that's enough compensation.
In the scheme of things it doesn't really matter that there's no historic information proclaiming today a national holiday. It's just a day for cupcake lovers who enjoy the tart, pucker-up zing of lemon to come together and eat their fill! Since it's also the holiday season, why not use National Lemon Cupcake Day as an excuse to whip up a batch of your own cupcakes and share them with the people you love? Here's a simple but scrumptious recipe to get you started:
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups (16 ounces) sour cream
3 tablespoons butter, softened
2-1/4 cups confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1 to 2 tablespoons milk
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and prepare your muffin tin, either greasing the cups or using liners.
Grab a big bowl and cream the butter and the sugar until it's fluffy and light. Add one egg at a time, beating well. Next add in the vanilla and the lemon zest. In another bowl, combine the dry ingredients – flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add in a little of the dry mix, then alternate with a little of the sour cream, making sure to beat consistently after each new addition. Continue until everything is mixed in thoroughly. By now your batter should be thick.
Fill each muffin cup with ¼ cup of your batter. Bake for about 25 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let the cupcakes cool for 10 minutes, then take them out of the tin and place them on a wire rack so they can finish cooling.
For the frosting, cream the confectioners' sugar with the butter until it's fluffy and light. Add in the zest, juice, milk, and vanilla. Beat it until it's smooth, then frost the cupcakes.
This is just a basic recipe. You can go all out – make some lemon meringue cupcakes, fill yours with lemon curd, use a cream cheese icing. Plan a potluck party where everyone brings their own specialty! How are you going to celebrate National Lemon Cupcake Day?