Lemon Series #1 : Vanilla Cupcakes with Lemon Curd Filling

lemon cupcakes. mmmmmmm.

lemon cupcakes. mmmmmmm.

I enjoy going to the grocery. I find browsing through the aisles very therapeutic and love the sight of fresh, lush produce.  I gravitate more towards the leafy vegetables every time I shop (because I feel healthier when I am near them. ha ha) but one thing I cannot resist are lemons. Lemons cheer me up with their scent and their brightness and nothing reminds me of summer more than these fruits. Lemons can be used in mostly any kind of recipe – salad dressings, soups, pasta sauces, juices, marinades, cakes, cookies and of course, cupcakes!  So today, during an early morning trip to the grocery, I stocked up on my favorite citrus fruit and set out to make a batch of vanilla cupcakes with lemon curd filling.

lemon curd c/o Martha Stewart

lemon curd c/o Martha Stewart

As usual, I found my recipe for vanilla cupcakes and butter cream frosting online. With so many choices available, it can be quite tricky to pick one recipe that I may decide to stick with for the rest of my baking life. So when choosing, I try to find one that uses almost the same ingredients as I would with my other cupcakes. A well-photographed cupcake also helps.

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lemon filled cupcake

My lemon curd recipe is from the ever-reliable Martha Stewart.  Not wanting to make such a big batch, I decided to cut this recipe in half, which was quite easy since most of the measurements were in whole numbers. I just wish I could say the same for my cupcake endeavor during the week where I tried cutting a recipe in half. Being the math genius that I am, I was stumped when I had to cut ¾ cup in half. I couldn’t figure out the correct answer and was wondering whether to measure in the same unit or to convert! I swear, I must’ve looked ridiculous holding a calculator in one hand a measuring cup in another. I ended up putting 1 ¼ cup and a half. (I’m officially confused again). So if you guys have any tips on cutting recipes in half, please let me know and spare this mathematically challenged baker the misery.

Lemon Curd

•    4 large eggs plus 4 large egg yolks
•    1 1/3 cup sugar
•    2/3 cup fresh lemon juice (about 4 lemons)
•    pinch of salt
•    10 tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into pieces

In a small saucepan (off heat), whisk together eggs, egg yolks, sugar, lemon juice, and salt until smooth; add butter

Place pan over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon or heatproof flexible spatula, until lemon curd is thickened to the consistency of a loose pudding, 8 to 10 minutes.

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10 Comments »

  1. Kaye said

    hey maimai, i get stumped with fractions too. but it is easier to get the right measurement when you imagine how, say, 3/4 of a cup is made up, then go from there. so when splitting 3/4 in half, remember that 3/4 is 1/2+1/4, right? so when cutting that in half, you have 1/4 (for half of 1/2), and 1/8 (for half of 1/4). such that half of 3/4c = 1/4c+1/8c. :)

    hmmm… i think i made it more confusing for you. but this is how i work with cutting fractions in half for recipes. hehe.

    • missmaimai said

      Oh my gosh! Thanks so much, Kaye! You just made my life a lot easier! I knew there had to be a simple way to do it and translate to the measuring cups. Now i know :)

  2. siri said

    These look painfully good. I can almost envision their tanginess. I love the photo of the cross section so you can see the curd on the inside too.

    Thanks so much for sharing, I’ll have to bookmark this!

    -Siri

  3. Jen said

    Those look and sound sooooo yummy!!!

  4. ginger said

    i want.

  5. These cupcakes look fantastic.
    Also, regarding measurements, knowing that 1/4 cup is 4 Tablespoons has saved me so many times. I like Kaye’s division…I would then have 1/4 c + 2 T (since this is 1/8 of a cup and I don’t have that size cup). :)

    • missmaimai said

      That helps too, food librarian! Thanks :)

      @ Siri, Jen adn Ginger – I had the cupcakes yesterday and they were wonderfully moist and just had the right amount of lemon flavor. It was difficult not to eat two. ha ha

  6. Steph said

    I know what you mean about way too many recipes. It’s so hard to decide sometimes! Mmm.. lemon curd!

  7. Ninette said

    I love lemons too and use them in almost everything. I have yet to try lemon baked goods, but these look yummy!

  8. Shb said

    Hi, just found this site. These cupcakes look delicious! I see the recipe for the lemon curd and for the cupcakes and buttercream, but I don’t see where you combine the two. Am I missing something? How do you get the lemon curd into the cupcake? Thanks!

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