In a few weeks, I am going to be making a wedding cake for some friends who are getting married. They really like the lemon-raspberry combination, and I already have a great lemon cake recipe and a great raspberry filling recipe, but I have never actually put them all together. So, I made these cupcakes to test it out. They were really delicious! I am not sure why I have not put them together sooner! And, with any luck, the bride will agree. Raspberry can go all the way from super fresh to jammy, this filling is kind of in between, so we will see.
The cake is a very lemon cake that I originally go out of a Cooking with Paula Deen Magazine several years ago and have only barely adapted. The filling is sort of a cobbled together from bits of other recipes to make it the way I want it. And, the frosting is a classic cream cheese with the additions of lemon zest and juice.
Raspberry-Filled Lemon Cupcakes
yield: 24 cupcakes
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 Tbsp. lemon zest
1/3 cup lemon juice
3 cups cake flour
1 tsp. of baking soda
1 1/4 cups whole buttermilk
optional: lemon slices for garnish
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream together butter and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Mix in lemon zest. Add eggs one at a time mixing well after each addition. Mix in lemon juice and baking soda until well combined. Add flour to mixture, alternating with buttermilk, but beginning and ending with flour. (I use 5 additions – flour, buttermilk, flour, buttermilk, flour.) Using a scoop to make each cupcake the same size, scoop the mixture into the muffin cups. Bake for approximately 20 minutes. Cool completely before filling and frosting.
Using a small sharp knife cut a cone shape out of the center of each cupcake. Slice off the pointed end of the cone. Fill with raspberry filling. (I put mine in a plastic bag, cut a small hole in the corner, and squeeze it into the hole in the cupcake because it gives me a little more control than a spoon.) Cover the filling with the remainder of the cone and ice with cream cheese frosting as desired. ( I pipe mine on with a large star tip.) Garnish with lemon slices if desired.
For more information on filling cupcakes, there is a great tutorial here.
2 12 oz. packages of frozen raspberries (Fresh would probably be better, but I have a hard time finding good ones locally.)
1 Tbsp. lemon juice (or a bit more or less depending on your taste)
1/4 cup sugar (or a bit more or less depending on your taste)
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
Thaw berries. Press berries through a fine mesh sieve until you get as much pulp and juice as you can without getting seeds. (You will still probably have a few seeds.) You should have about 1 cup of pulp and juice. Combine the pulp/juice mixture with the the lemon juice, sugar, and cornstarch in a medium/small saucepan. Whisk continuously over medium heat until mixture begins to boil. Boil for 1 minute or until thickened and cornstarch is cooked. (It will taste/feel powdery if it is not cooked.)
lemon cream cheese filling:
1/2 cup (1 stick butter), at room temperature
1 8 oz. package cream cheese, softened
1 Tbsp. lemon zest
1 lb. confectioners’ sugar
2-4 Tbsps. lemon juice (depending on how stiff you want your icing)
With the paddle attachment of an electric mixer, mix together butter, cream cheese and lemon zest. Mix until well combined. Mix in confectioners’ sugar until well combined and completely smooth. Mix in lemon juice a little at a time until icing reaches your desired consistency.