My Dad, “the nutball” as I affectionately refer to him, is amazing and in great shape. Every day for years he has spent several hours a day, every day, riding his bike, swimming, running on the treadmill and . . . he took up rollerblading in his 60’s. At 65 he retired for a couple months, then went back to work to keep busy, still working part time on and off. A couple years ago at 69 turning 70 he rode his bike from his home in Tucson, Arizona to where he grew up in Charlevoix, Michigan. Now he is on his latest adventure, riding solo coast to coast. He left from Newport Beach, California and intends to go by way of Las Vegas (visited us) on to Michigan again, finally ending up somewhere near Boston to finish. If you want to follow his progress, you can see his blog at http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/?o=RrzKj&doc_id=6928&v=2H.
Sadly he wanted to keep to his schedule so he missed the cupcakes by a couple days and had already moved on by Father’s Day. The rest of the family obligingly ate a few extra cupcakes in his honor and I did feed him well while he was here.
Here is the recipe for the Blueberry Lemonade cupcakes.
Blueberry Lemonade Cupcakes with Lemon Curd and Lemonade Icing
Blueberry Lemonade Cupcakes
2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup granulated sugar
4 Tbsp grated lemon zest
1/2 cup vegetable oil
4 egg whites
2/3 cup thawed frozen Lemonade Concentrate
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 cups frozen blueberries
3 cup + 3 Tbsp. confectioner’s sugar
1 stick unsalted butter at room temperature
1/8 tsp salt
2 Tbsp grated lemon zest
2 Tbs lemonade concentrate
2 egg yolks
3/4 cups sugar
4 Tbsp cornstarch
3/4 cups water
2 Tbs butter or margarine
2 tsp grated lemon peel
1/3 cup lemon juice
Blueberry Lemonade Cupcakes
1 Preheat oven to 350 F. Line muffin pan with liners.
2 In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
3 In a large bowl, whisk together lemon zest, sugar, oil, egg whites and lemonade concentrate. Alternately whisk in flour mixture and buttermilk, making three additions of flour mixture and two of buttermilk, beating until just smooth. Add blueberries and mix gently (using frozen blueberries will keep your batter from turning blue but if you don’t mind you could also use fresh ones.)
4 Scoop batter into liners (fill about three-fourths full). Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely on rack.
1 Add the butter, confectioner’s sugar, salt and lemonade concentrate on low using the paddle attachment until combined. Turn the speed to med-high until the buttercream is fluffy. Pipe a ring around the tops of each cupcake, filling the center with the lemon curd (below) onto cooled cupcakes. Note that this icing does get a little bit of a hard shell on the outside which makes it keep its shape and hold the lemon curd, but you could use a cream cheese icing if you prefer it to remain soft but still be firm enough to hold the lemon curd.
1 In small bowl, beat egg yolks with fork. In 2-quart saucepan, mix sugar and cornstarch; gradually stir in water. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and boils. Boil and stir 1 minute. Immediately stir at least half of hot mixture into egg yolks, then put that mixture back into the saucepan mixing vigorously so the eggs don’t scramble. Boil and stir 2 minutes; remove from heat. Stir in butter, lemon peel, lemon juice. Allow the mixture to cool, then pipe into the center of the icing on the cupcakes.
I also made an assortment using the chocolate cupcake and ganache recipe from my earlier post http://simplycooking101.wordpress.com/2010/06/08/chocolate-cupcakes-with-peanut-butter-icing-better-than-peanut-butter-cups/ along with these for a gift basket.