I should preface this by saying that I had a whole post planned out: “A Tale of Two Cupcakes, or: It Was the Best of Times, It Was the Blurst of Times.” However, cupcakes the second were more or less inhaled in record time, and may not have photographed as impressively (this is what I tell myself), and instead I was left with a bunch of pictures of cupcakes the first.
I had had some inklings of these cupcakes bouncing around my brain for a while, now, but I was inspired by the lemon-mascarpone cake on Life, Love, and Sugar. It looked really good, but I didn’t want to fuss with making my own lemon curd from scratch, and unless you’re feeding a crowd (I’m usually not), whole layer cakes are an annoyance to store.
I started out with the golden vanilla cupcakes from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World, and added some lemon zest and juice, plus just a hint of lemon extract in addition to the vanilla. Oh, and maybe just a drop or two of yellow food colouring. Once they had cooled, I used my trusty corer and filled the insides with jarred lemon spread.
(Quick aside: I had a childhood friend who would eat peanut butter and lemon spread sandwiches for lunch. Shocking, I know! Schools used to allow peanut products on their property. We were made of tougher stuff then.)
While the thought of peanut butter and lemon spread together still makes me want to retch, lemon spread on its own is tangy and delicious, and did not make the cupcakes soggy – most important!
Instead of a mascarpone icing, I made one of my new favourites: the whipped cream-cream cheese icing from Brown Eyed Baker. It’s just fluffy and perfect, not too sweet, and if you have some left over and can manage not to eat it by the spoonful on its own, it goes great on fruit, toast, you name it.
What’s that? Quit waxing nostalgic about peanut-permissive schools and get to the pictures?
Cue the striptease music…
The cupcakes were moist on their own, but the lemon filling helped keep them moist over the next couple of days. And after sitting, fully assembled, for 24 hours, the flavours melded and the filling was just a bit less tangy and became almost an extension of the cake (flavour-wise, not texture-wise). I’m not sure about the best of times, but these were pretty darned good!
Thanks for looking! 🙂