Key Lime Cupcakes

Sorry I have been out of commission for a while... I have been baking, but just not blogging .. it has been a very busy spring so far.  Here is something to cheer you up in case you were sad I was gone.

Key Lime Cupcakes with Key lime curd!

Want something tart, sweet and oh so refreshing?  Try these.. but I warn you, if you do not have a juicer.. your little fingers will be tired.

3 1/2 cups cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 sticks cool unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs 
1/3 cup key lime juice
2 tablespoons key lime zest
1 1/2 cups buttermilk

1. Preheat oven to 350*F. Line a muffin tin with 24 paper liners.
2. Sift the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt three times, set aside.
3. Using a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on low until it’s softened a bit. Add the sugar and increase the speed to medium. Beat until fluffy, about four minutes. Add one egg at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the lime juice, zest, and food coloring and beat until mixed. (The mixture will look curdled.)
4. Add the flour in three additions, alternating with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour, scraping down the bowl as necessary. Mix on low until just combined. 
5.Fill each cupcake liner 2/3 full. Bake 20-25 minutes. Cool completely 

1/2-cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons grated key lime zest (about 4-5 key limes)
1/4 cup freshly squeezed key lime juice (8-10 key limes)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, diced

1. In a medium saucepan combine sugar, eggs, lime zest and juice.
2. Cook mixture over medium-low heat, whisking constantly. Cook until mixture begins to thicken and hold the mark of a whisk ran through it; about 10-15 minutes.
3. Remove pan from heat. Whisk in diced butter a few pieces at a time. Mix until well combined
4. Place in a bowl and  cover mixture tightly with plastic by laying plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd. This prevents a film from forming. Chill in the freezer for 1 hour.. but check every 20 min to make sure it isnt actually freezing, you just want it to cool and thicken.

1 stick cool unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
8 ounces cream cheese (room temperature), cut into 8 pieces
2 ¼ cups powdered sugar, sifted
1 tablespoon key lime zest

1. Using a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on low until it’s softened a bit. Increase speed to medium and add the cream cheese one piece at a time. Reduce speed to low and slowly add powdered sugar until combined. Beat in zest.

To Put all together... place curd in a piping bag with a round tip or filling tip and pipe curd into cupcakes.  Then ice as desired.. and sprinkle with some key lime zest.


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