No matter where you are in the world, one season that can lift your spirits is Summer!
Despite the sweltering heat, the vacation mood, contagious little virus that it is, keeps everyone smiling cheerfully. This is a season for quick bites that minimizes your time in the kitchen so that you can make the best of picnics, family outings or trips with your partner. This recipe is one of my favorites because of how ridiculously easy it is to make, how long and easily you can store it in the fridge and how pretty it looks.
Interested? Let’s get straight down to it.
This makes 12 cupcakes.
What You Need –
For the Dough
1. 2 Large Eggs (yolks and whites separated)
2. ½ Cup Butter
3. ½ cup Sugar
4. 1 cup All-purpose flour (Maida)
5. 1 tsp baking powder
6. ¼ tsp salt
7. 3 tbsps lemon juice
8. 1 tsp lemon rind
Optional – For the vegetarian option, instead of the eggs, use 200g of condensed milk and do not add any sugar.
For the glaze
1. 3 tbsps lemon juice
2. 2 tbsps sugar
3. A dollop of butter
- In a bowl (not too small), beat the yolks for three minutes with an electric hand beater. If you prefer to do it the rustic way, hold a whisk parallel to your work surface, tilt the bowl almost 45 degrees to the surface towards you and move your wrist in quick circular movements. Start and stop in batches of 30 seconds to avoid getting tired.
- In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar till the sugar is coated in the butter. The mixture will be crystalline, which is okay.
- Slowly pour the yolks into the butter-sugar mixture and using a spatula, gently fold it in. Add the lemon juice and rind.
- In another bowl, mix the flour, baking powder and salt.
- Add 1/4th of the dry mixture to the wet mixture and beat till well combined.
- Continue to add the dry mixture in batches of heaped tablespoons until you get a beautiful creamy batter. The batter should not be runny.
- Now, beat the egg whites with an electric beater till stiff peaks are visible. I would advise against beating them by hand, it is extremely exhausting.
- Fold the egg whites into the batter gently to avoid flattening the airy white froth.
- Set the oven to pre-heat at 180° C.
- Lightly brush the cupcake tray with butter, or use cupcake cases (the paper you peel off before you eat).
- Gently pour the batter till 3/4th of the tray/cases are filled. To give the cupcakes their pretty shape, gently run the base of your spoon over the filled tray, swirling inwards and breaking contact at the center.
- Stick into the oven for 30 minutes. Make sure they do not turn brown. Lightly insert a skewer through the center and pull it out. If it comes out clean, the cupcakes are done.
For the glaze
- Partially dissolve the sugar into the lemon juice.
- In a saucepan, heat the butter and as soon as it melts, add the sugar and lemon juice mixture and whisk.
- When the mixture thickens (it will start to bubble, keep whisking it continuously), take it off the flame and teaspoon it over the cupcakes immediately. Alternatively, you can use a basting brush.
- It will set like jelly in 15 minutes.
The cupcakes can be refrigerated when they cool down for up to a week in an airtight container.
Enjoy them with a chilled glass of iced tea!
– By Sonali Mukherjee, for IWI*
A curious person by nature, I have ventured into many areas of interest despite my mainstream choice of career. An engineer by profession, I also have a blog, have published stories online, am a trained classical dancer, and create new recipes using a wide variety of ingredients and cooking styles.
*If you wish to write for IWI, head to our submissions page.