Tangy Summer Treat: Lemon Drop Cupcakes

Lemon drops are a sweet, and just a little sour, alternative to the regular vodka martini. Have these cocktail-inspired cupcakes stirred, not shaken, for a refreshing citrus dessert.

Ingredients

•   2 ¾ cups sifted flour (1 ¼ cups cake flour and 1 ½ cups all purpose flour)

•   4 ½ teaspoons baking powder, just a tad less is good.

•   ½  teaspoon salt, just a tad less is good. Do Not Exceed ½ teaspoon.

•   4 egg whites

•   ½  teaspoon cream of tartar

•   1 ½  cups sugar ( ¾ cup granulated, ¾ cup confectioners’ sugar)

•   ¾ cup butter, softened

•   ¾  cup milk

•   ¼  vodka

•   1 teaspoon vanilla extract

•   juice from half a lemon

•   1 tablespoon lemon zest

Sift together flour, baking powder and salt.

Beat egg whites until foamy with cream of tartar.

In a separate bowl, cream butter and add sugar.  Blend egg mixture into this bowl.

Add dry ingredients alternately with milk, a small amount at a time.

Blend in extracts, lemon parts and vodka.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes.

Allow cake to cool.


For the Lemon Vodka Buttercream 

1 cup unsalted butter, softened

3 cups confectioner’s (powdered) sugar, sifted

1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)

1 tablespoon vanilla

1 tablespoon vodka, vodka to taste

Whip it all together!


For the Lemon Drizzle

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon lemon zest

1 teaspoon vanilla

Use a double boiler (or use a stainless steel bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water): melt the butter in the top bowl. Whisk together the eggs, sugar and lemon juice until blended and pour into the top bowl. Cook and whisk constantly (to prevent the egg from curdling)over the simmering water. Keep whisking until the mixture becomes pale in color and thickens to the consistency of sour cream (about 10 minutes of steady whisking or 160 degrees F on a candy thermometer). Remove from heat and immediately pour through a fine strainer if there are any lumps (strainer step optional). Keep the cooked lemon mixture off the heat, and stir in the lemon zest and vanilla extract. Chill in refrigerator for 2-6 hours.

Add buttercream & top with lemon drizzle!

Enjoy!

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