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A hub for all things to do with design, furniture painting, photography, style, event planning [and some foodie bits for good measure].  

Baby Cakes with a Meyer Lemon Icing: Lighter Alternative to the Cupcake?

Cupcakes are a universally loved treat.  NO ONE says no to a cupcake. Okay, perhaps this is a slight exaggeration, but if you do enjoy a cupcake every now and again, you know as well as I do that they're a bit addictive. 

I don't bake all that often, but for for special occasions or if I'm just in the mood for something sweet, it's nice to have a few go to recipes I can feel a little less guilty about. 

The biggest culprit of the cupcake is the overload of frosting. Yes, it's sinful and wonderful, but typically it's sole ingredients are butter and sugar.  Just vats and globs of butter and sugar. [AHH!]

So for a slight twist on the usual cupcake, I used a mini bundt cupcake pan I have to create some adorable cakes that just don't need all that extra frosting.

 I did do a few drops of icing [in purple in honor of last week's Mardi Gras festivities], but that bit of sweetness is all these needed. I also omitted using whole eggs in favor of egg whites, only adding to the lighter feel of these cakes.

Baby Cakes with Meyer Lemon Icing

Ingredients:

  • 3 large egg whites
  • 1/2 cup milk [either whole or 2 percent works best]
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract [or just go for a little extra vanilla if you don't have almond around]
  • 1.25 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 TBsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 6 TBsp softened butter [I actually used Earth Balance spread this time and they came out perfect!]

For icing:

  • 1 large egg white
  • 1tsp vanilla or almond extract
  • 1 tsp meyer lemon juice [I just had some around and wanted to try it, but any citrus works just as well]
  • 1.5 cups powdered sugar

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F. I used a bundt cupcake pan I have and just sprayed it with cooking spray, but you could also make traditional cupcakes with a muffin tin and cupcake liners. Whisk together all the liquid ingredients [egg whites, milk and extracts] until light an frothy.

In a separate bowl combine all the dry ingredients [flour, sugar, baking powder, salt]. I used a food processor, since I brought my stand mixer to the studio, and it works just as well! Cut in butter [again the food processor worked great, but most people will likely use their stand mixer or a hand mixer for this] until mixture is coarse [butter should be smaller than pea sized].

Then mix in liquid mixture on high speed until thoroughly combined. I whisked everything together, just to incorporate a little more air into the batter. Pour into pan and bake for 12-15 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean and the tops are light golden. [my oven took hardly any time, but it also may be because my pan is a very dark].  Allow cakes to cool on a wire rack.

In the meantime, prepare icing by whisking egg whites and extract until light and frothy, then whisk in powdered sugar in small batches. Once the cakes have cooled, drizzle the icing, as little or as much as you'd like onto the cakes. Makes 12 and serves up beautifully with a cup or two of English breakfast tea!