Lemon Meringue Pie Cookies

Lemon Meringue Pie Cookies

Eggs are a staple food for me. I bake with them all the time. I can create an awesome gluten free recipe, but take away eggs and ask me to make a vegan one, and I struggle. I also eat eggs at least a couple times a week for dinner. That’s right; I’m a breakfast for dinner kind of gal. I love eggs poached, scrambled, baked, turned into a frittata or microwave omelet. I’m basically an egg freak.

Because I eat eggs so frequently, it’s important to me that my eggs are responsibly sourced from humanely treated chickens. When I’m cracking open an egg, I don’t always think about where it came from, and I bet you don’t either. I get it, when you’re in the middle of baking a cake, whipping up a brunch spread, or figuring out a quick dinner after a long day, you don’t want to have a conversation about where those eggs came from.

Cage-Free Eggs

Lemon Meringue Pie Cookies

But by thinking about where your eggs come from and deciding to purchase cage-free eggs, you never have to worry about it again. Over 300 million hens in the US and Canada are living terrible lives, in a space about the size of an iPad. They can’t spread their wings or walk around, leading to injury and stress, which raises the risk of salmonella in eggs, and nobody wants salmonella in their eggs. In fact, it’s hard to even want to eat eggs when you learn how hens, who are social creatures and want to enjoy their lives, are treated.

Luckily, there’s an easy fix: buy cage-free eggs. Yep, it’s that simple. They might be a little more expensive, but it’s worth it to know those hens are happier and their eggs are safer. Cage-free hens are able to walk around, take dust baths, and be typical hens. It sounds to me like it’s a win-win situation. Half of egg buyers say they’d buy a different product if they learned it was made from animals that suffered unnecessarily. I’m definitely one of them.

Lemon Meringue Pie Cookies

I encourage you to sign the Pledge to Choose Cage-Free. This is such an important initiative from the World Society for the Protection of Animals. By taking the pledge and buying cage-free eggs change is possible, and the lives of millions of hens can be improved. Plus, the blogger who gets the most people to sign the pledge will win an interview with Chef Christine Cushing, a famous chef from Food Network Canada. So please, sign the pledge.

After you sign the pledge, you are going to want to stock up on cage-free eggs to make these delectable Lemon Meringue Pie Cookies. From the cakey vanilla cookies to the silky smooth lemon curd to the fluffy, sticky Italian meringue, these cookies are a fabulous mix of flavors and textures everyone is sure to enjoy. They were swiftly devoured in my house and will be in yours too!

Lemon Meringue Pie Cookies

Lemon Meringue Pie Cookies

Lemon Meringue Pie Cookies

Prep Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 2 hours

Yield: 10 cookies

Ingredients

Cookies

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour

1 ½ teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup granulated sugar

2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Lemon Curd

Zest of 4 lemons

½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 ¼ cup granulated sugar

5 large egg yolks

1 stick unsalted butter, cold and cubed

Italian Meringue

½ cup water

1 ½ cups granulated sugar

2 tablespoons light corn syrup

5 large egg whites

½ plus ⅛ teaspoon cream of tartar

1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

Instructions

Make the cookies. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment. In a medium bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, and salt. In a large bowl, cream sugar and butter until light and fluffy. I did this by hand, but a hand or stand mixer would work as well. Add the eggs and mix until once again light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and mix to combine.

Add the flour and mix just until a dough is formed. Using a regular sized ice cream scoop, scoop dough onto prepared pan. Bake for 17-20 minutes, until cookies are golden brown around the edges and just starting to set. While cookies are hot, use your thumb to make a large indentation in the center of the cookies. Cool completely on tray. Cookies may be made 1 day ahead of time.

Make the lemon curd. In a medium saucepan, whisk together lemon zest and juice, sugar, and egg yolks. Place the pan over medium-low heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the curd thickens slightly, about 5-7 minutes.

Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the butter 1 piece at a time. Continue stirring until all the butter is emulsified. You may strain the curd if you like. I skipped that step. Pour the curd into an airtight container and place a piece of plastic wrap directly on top of the curd to prevent a skin from forming. Store curd in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Make the meringue. In a small saucepan, combine water, sugar, and corn syrup over medium heat. Stir frequently until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is clear. Once this happens, attach a candy thermometer, raise the heat to medium-high, and stop stirring. Allow the mixture to come to 240 degrees F on the candy thermometer.

In the meantime, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on medium-high until frothy. Add the cream of tartar. Continue beating on medium-high until the egg whites form stiff peaks.

When the egg whites have formed stiff peaks and the sugar mixture has reached 240, remove the syrup from the heat and turn the mixer to medium-low. Slowly and immediately begin drizzling the syrup into the egg whites, trying not to get it on the sides of the bowl. If the whites are done whipping before the syrup is done, turn them off until the syrup reaches 235, then turn them back on to make sure they are fluffy. If the syrup is done before the whites, turn the heat down or remove it from the heat for a minute or so.

Once the syrup is drizzled into the whites, turn the mixer back up to medium-high and beat for about 7 minutes, until the bottom of the bowl is cool and the marshmallow is thick, glossy, and voluminous. Add the vanilla and mix about 1 minute more. Meringue may be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.

Assemble the cookies. Generously fill the indentation in each cookie with lemon curd. Place several mounds of meringue on top and smooth with an offset spatula, covering cookie entirely. Once all the cookies are coated, turn on the broiler and broil until the meringue is golden brown. Cookies may be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.

Notes

Additional cooling time is necessary

http://piesandplots.net/lemon-meringue-pie-cookies/

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Emeril’s Famous Banana Cream Pie

Emeril's Famous Banana Cream Pie

When I mention Edie Falco, you probably think of Carmela Soprano.  I’ve barely seen more than the pilot and finale of The Sopranos, an embarrassing fact for a TV addict like me.  I have to watch it one day.  Since I’m a Sopranos novice, I think of Jackie Peyton, the main character on Nurse Jackie, when I think of Edie Falco.

Nurse Jackie is one of my favorite shows on TV.  It’s smart, touching, and one of the few shows that actually makes me laugh out loud, typically multiple times each episode.  The thirty minutes fly by, as I forget to even glance at the clock.  The credits roll far too soon, leaving me hungry for another episode.

Emeril's Famous Banana Cream Pie

Emeril's Famous Banana Cream Pie

Jackie is, of course, a nurse.  She is great at her job and cares about her patients as she does her family, fighting for the best for those around her.  She is a flawed person, having battled drug addiction which left her marriage in shambles.  Her desire to be a good person and do the right thing despite her flaws is inspiring and quite relatable.  She, like all of us, is just trying to do the best she can, which isn’t always good enough.

If you haven’t watched Nurse Jackie, perhaps you can catch up on Netflix or OnDemand.  It is definitely worth seeking out.  I would actually love to start watching from the beginning again.

Emeril's Famous Banana Cream Pie

Mom also loves the show, even if she hates to admit a Showtime show, full of swearing and adult situations, is one of her favorites.  It’s one of the many things we bond over.  Another is this Banana Cream Pie.  She has always loved banana cream pie and wanted to make it, and I’ve never had it before!  Ever!  Can you believe that?  Some high quality graham crackers from Zingerman’s inspired me to get in the kitchen and make one.

I used the famous recipe from Emeril’s New Orleans, as featured by Wolfgang Puck on the Best Thing I Ever Ate.  Since I’ll unfortunately probably never get to New Orleans, I figured I’d make it to see what all the fuss is about.  Let me tell you, this did not disappoint one bit.  I loved every bite and can’t wait to make it again . . . maybe with some peanut butter.  I made my first ever graham cracker crust, which was perfectly thick, crunchy, and slightly grainy, providing structure and texture to the layered bananas and thick, velvety vanilla bean pastry cream.  And then because it’s my favorite thing on Earth, I topped it with Italian meringue, which is lighter and a little sweeter than whipped cream.  Together the flavors and textures are a pretty unspeakably amazing combination.  My prescription: make this pie and watch Nurse Jackie.

Emeril's Famous Banana Cream Pie

Emeril's Famous Banana Cream Pie

Emeril’s Famous Banana Cream Pie

Prep Time: 2 hours

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 40 minutes

Yield: 8 slices

Ingredients

Crust

2 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs

¼ cup granulated sugar

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Pie

2 cups heavy cream

1 ½ cups milk (I used almond milk)

1 ½ cups granulated sugar

½ vanilla bean, split and scraped, pod and beans reserved

3 large egg yolks

2 large eggs

½ cup cornstarch

9 medium bananas, ripe but firm, sliced into ½ inch thick slices

1 recipe Italian meringue

Instructions

Make the pastry cream. In a large saucepan, combine cream, milk, ½ cup sugar, and vanilla bean pod and seeds. Bring to a slow boil, whisking frequently. Remove from heat.

In a medium bowl, whisk together egg yolks, eggs, cornstarch, and 1 cup sugar until lightened in color and texture. Slowly whisk 1 cup of the hot cream mixture into the egg mixture. Do not stop whisking. Then, slowly add the egg mixture to the hot cream mixture in the pan, whisking constantly. Bring to a simmer, stirring constantly until the cream has thickened substantially, about 5 minutes. Pour into a medium bowl. Allow to cool at room temperature about 30 minutes, before covering with plastic wrap directly on the surface of the cream to prevent a skin from forming and refrigerating for at least 4 hours and up to overnight.

Make the crust. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and butter. Pour into a pie pan and press in firmly with your hands, going all the way up the sides. Using a measuring cup press the bottom in very firmly. Bake for 15-25 minutes until golden brown. Cool completely.

Assemble the pie. Remove the vanilla bean pod from the pastry cream. Spread ½ cup pastry cream over the bottom of the cooled crust, smoothing into an even layer with a rubber spatula. Cover with bananas in a circular pattern. Press down on the bananas firmly but gently. Spread ¾ cup cream over the bananas, then cover with another layer of bananas and press down on them. Spread another ¾ cup cream over this layer of bananas and layer remaining bananas over the top, leaving about ½ inch border. Press down on bananas before topping with remaining cream. Cover the bananas entirely with the cream or they will brown. Cover the pie tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 4 hours and up to overnight.

When ready to serve the pie, top with Italian meringue. Do not top more than 30 minutes in advance or it will slide off. Alternatively, top individual pieces with meringue.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Emeril Lagasse

http://piesandplots.net/emerils-famous-banana-cream-pie/

Lemon Meringue Pie #SundaySupper

Lemon Meringue Pie #SundaySupper

Today is Mother’s Day.  Happy Mother’s Day, Mom.  But Mom is the most important person in my world, and one Hallmark holiday is nowhere near enough to celebrate her.  No, she deserves to be celebrated day in and day out.  I’ve written about Mom here many times before and will many more in the future, I’m sure, but since it is Mother’s Day, I thought it was the perfect time to celebrate Mom a little more.

Mom, I love you.  I love you more than the biggest bear hug and all the roses in the world could express.  I love that you get dressed up and do your hair and makeup and wear short skirts and high heels, even if your feet sometimes hurt.  I love that you love to watch TV and movies with me.  Who knew we’d bond over watching Shameless?  I love that you bake and cook with me, though sometimes I know you’d rather just order a pizza.  I love even more that you do the dishes because that can’t be as fun as the cooking and baking.  I love that you love the moon and always look for it day and night.  I love that you believe the number twelve means something in our lives . . . now if we could just figure out what that meaning is.

Lemon Meringue Pie #SundaySupper

Lemon Meringue Pie #SundaySupper

I love that you don’t get mad when I wake you in the middle of the night because I can’t sleep.  I love that I can tell you or ask you absolutely anything and I know you won’t judge because some days I’ve got a lot I need to get off my mind.  I love that you are my biggest cheerleader.  You support me through everything even when you aren’t entirely sure what’s going to happen or if it’s the right thing to do.  I love that you want my dreams to come true as much as me and that you are fighting for them right alongside me.  I love that you are the most generous, kind, loving person, and I hope those traits have rubbed off on me.  I love that you love me even with all of my flaws.

Mom, thank you.  Thank you more than those two simple words and all the Manolo Blahniks in the world could say.  Thank you for going shopping with me and running all kinds of places that might not always sound like fun, but a lot of the time turn out to be.  Thank you for buying me all kinds of crazy designer clothes and accessories and an endless supply of nail polish.  I promise I’ll pay you back plus a bunch one day soon.  Thank you for taking me to musicals and to concerts, it has broadened my horizons and made me a well-rounded person.

Lemon Meringue Pie #SundaySupper

Thank you for not taking the role of hard core parent, but instead being my friend in a world where I’ve never been able to find any.  For this I am eternally grateful.  I know it is not always easy and puts a lot of pressure on you, but I don’t know where I’d be without your friendship.  Thank you for understanding that I’m different . . . like really, really different, and loving me through all of it.  Thank you for supporting me through ups and downs, crazy dreams and farfetched passions, successes and disappointments.  Some days are great and there is no one I’d rather share them with and some days are decidedly not great and there’s no one whose shoulder I’d rather cry on.

I know that I have not been the easiest child to raise and for that I apologize.  I know you have hard days too, days when you wish things were just a little different.  I do too.  But know this: I am doing everything in my power, as little power as that may be, to make great things happen for both of us (and Dad too!).  I will not give up.  I will not disappoint you.  Things will work out because they simply have to.  Great things are in store, I’m just not quite sure when.  So, Happy Mother’s Day, Mom, I hope you enjoy the day! Lemon Meringue Pie #SundaySupper

I asked Mom what she wanted to make for Mother’s Day, and she said Lemon Meringue Pie.  That sounded great to me.  We’d made a similar pie once before prior to my blogging days and loved it, but this version is new and improved.  This is not the easiest recipe but it is one of the most impressive and delicious, well worth the time and effort.  A super flaky and crispy and buttery pie crust is blind baked before being filled with thick and smooth tart lemon filling and a mountain of Italian meringue that is broiled until lightly browned.

Italian meringue is one of my favorite things and I make it all the time.  But this time I was out of light corn syrup (tragedy, I know).  Instead, I reached for Lyle’s Golden Syrup.  The flavor was about the same, maybe slightly more caramelized, but the texture was light and fluffy.  It looked almost like buttercream, but tasted like a sweet, fluffy pillow.  I prefer the sticky corn syrup version for cupcakes or whoopie pies, but for the top of this pie, this version was perfect.  Together, the flaky crust, tart filling and sweet meringue are a match made in Mother’s Day heaven.  So go make this pie for your mom; I know she’ll appreciate it!

Lemon Meringue Pie #SundaySupper

Please check out all the other Sunday Supper recipes celebrating mom!

 Mother’s Day Brunch:

Mother’s Day Entrees:

Mother’s Day Sides:

Mother’s Day Desserts and Drinks:

Join the #SundaySupper conversation on Twitter on Sunday, May 12th to celebrate Mother’s day! We’ll tweet throughout the day and share recipes that celebrate mom.  Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm EST. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag, and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more delicious recipes and food photos.

Mom and Me

Mom and me at Taste of the Lions, which I’ll be posting about later this week!

 

Lemon Meringue Pie #SundaySupper

Prep Time: 5 hours

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 5 hours, 30 minutes

Yield: 8 slices

Ingredients

Crust

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

½ teaspoon kosher salt

1 ½ sticks unsalted butter, cold and cubed

½ cup vegetable shortening

4-7 tablespoons cold water

Filling

1 1/4 cups granulated sugar

5 tablespoons cornstarch

1 cup milk (I used almond)

1/2 cup cold water

1/8 teaspoon salt

6 large egg yolks

2/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

2 tablespoons lemon zest

1 1/2 tablespoons lemon vodka or limoncello

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cubed

Meringue

½ cup water

1 ½ cups granulated sugar

2 tablespoons light corn syrup or Lyle’s Golden Syrup

5 large egg whites

½ plus ⅛ teaspoon cream of tartar

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Instructions

Make the crust. In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour, sugar, and salt. Pulse to combine. Add shortening and butter. Pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add 4 tablespoons of water and pulse to combine. Add more water as needed, until the dough comes together when pressed. It should not be overly moist. Dump the dough onto plastic, wrap it up, forming it into a disc. Refrigerate it for at least 1 hour and up to overnight.

After the dough has chilled, divide it into 2 almost equal pieces, because this is a one crust pie, I use more than half. But you may talk only half and freeze the other half, wrapped in plastic and foil and placed in a zipper bag for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before rolling and using. On a lightly floured surface, roll half of the crust so it is large enough to fit your pie pan. Press it into the pan. Put the pan back into the refrigerator for about 1 hour to chill.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. After the crust has chilled, line it with parchment and fill the parchment with dried beans, rice, or pie weights. I actually used pecans because I didn’t have anything else and they came out pretty much perfectly toasted! Bake for 12 minutes. Remove the pie weights and parchment and continue baking for 10-15 minutes until light golden brown. Allow to cool completely.

Make the filling. In a large non-reactive saucepan, whisk together sugar, cornstarch, milk, water, and salt over medium heat. Bring to a simmer and continue to simmer until the mixture thickens substantially about 3 minutes. Whisking constantly, add the egg yolks two at a time. Then slowly drizzle in the lemon juice while whisking, followed by the lemon zest and lemon vodka. Continuing to whisk, add in the butter 1 piece at a time and then return to a simmer. After it has simmered, remove from the heat and immediately pour into the prepared pie crust.

Make the meringue. In a small saucepan, combine water, sugar, and corn syrup or golden syrup over medium heat. Stir frequently until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is clear. Once this happens, attach a candy thermometer, raise the heat to medium-high, and stop stirring. Allow the mixture to come to 240 degrees F on the candy thermometer.

In the meantime, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on medium-high until frothy. Add the cream of tartar. Continue beating on medium-high until the egg whites form stiff peaks.

When the egg whites have formed stiff peaks and the sugar mixture has reached 240, remove the syrup from the heat and turn the mixer to medium-low. Slowly and immediately begin drizzling the syrup into the egg whites, trying not to get it on the sides of the bowl. If the whites are done whipping before the syrup is done, turn them off until the syrup reaches 235, then turn them back on to make sure they are fluffy. If the syrup is done before the whites, turn the heat down or remove it from the heat for a minute or so.

Once the syrup is drizzled into the whites, turn the mixer back up to medium-high and beat for about 7 minutes, until the bottom of the bowl is cool and the meringue is thick, glossy, and voluminous. Add the vanilla and mix about 1 minute more. Meringue may be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. I recommend doing this as it makes assembling the pie easier.

Once the filling is in the pie crust and the meringue is prepared, put the meringue over the filling, covering it completely. It is best to apply the meringue while the filling is still hot. Place pie in a preheated broiler for 1-2 minutes to brown and set the meringue. Do not walk away from the broiler. Keep a very close watch on the pie as this will happen quickly. Allow the pie to cool at room temperature for about 30 minutes, before refrigerating until completely chilled, about 3 hours. May be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Pie may not be frozen.

Notes

Crust recipe adapted from Bobby Flay Filling recipe adapted from Emeril Lagasse

http://piesandplots.net/lemon-meringue-pie-sundaysupper/

Honeybell Cupcakes

Honeybell Cupcakes

There are some foods with which I’m pretty much obsessed.  Bananas are my fuel, the only food I eat every single day.  One at breakfast, one at lunch, they give me energy and vitamins for a high performance workout.  Not to mention they are super yummy.  Even though I eat more than one hundred bananas a year, sometimes they taste so good I want to reach for a third for the day.  This is also why you don’t see any banana recipes on my blog.  I eat them so much and like them in their truest form that I’d rather bake with other items.

The mere thought of wild Alaskan king salmon makes my mouth water.  Whether fresh from the peak of the season or super high quality previously frozen, my week is not complete without a serving or two of king.  I typically bake it unseasoned to let the flavor of the fish shine through.  After the just baked through fish comes out, I put the skin back in the oven to get it crispy.  Mom doesn’t like the skin, so I usually eat hers too.  It’s one of my favorite things on earth, and all the healthy omega-3s have made my skin less dry than a few years ago when fish wasn’t a part of my diet.

Honeybells

Nothing gets me more excited than a serving of gummy candy.  All the different fruity flavors, some super sweet, others a little sour, they always make me smile as I munch on a few pieces.  I have an insatiable appetite for them and am unable to stop myself from buying them when I see some in a store or online that look interesting.  The pantry is always fully stocked for when I need a good sugar high.

Honeybell Cupcakes

Honeybell Cupcakes

For the most part I’m obsessed with fruit in general.  While bananas are the only fruit I eat every single day, peaches, plums, cherries, blackberries, blueberries, pears, apples, pomegranates, lemons, oranges, mangos, kiwis, and more all make frequent appearance in my diet.  I even stash stone fruit in my freezer for a treat during the winter months.  Luckily I don’t go through my stash too quickly with all the citrus, including my favorite: the Honeybell.

Only in season in January, true Honeybells most commonly come from Cushman’s.  I place my order early to make sure I don’t miss out on the ones I want.  This year I ordered 15 of the biggest, nicest Honeybells they offer, received six more as part of the Harry and David fruit of the month club our friends gave us, and have more on the way this week from QVC’s Today’s Special offer.  I think it’s pretty safe to say I’m obsessed with Honeybells.

Honeybell Cupcakes

I’ve never baked with them before, but with all those amazing pieces of fruit staring back at me and an orange cupcake recipe I’ve wanted to make for years, it was time to finally take the plunge.  And I am so glad I did.

The Honeybell cupcakes begin with candied Honeybells.  You could certainly skip this step as they are essentially a garnish, but I highly recommend making them.  Crepes of Wrath’s candied clementine recipe is super easy and swapping in the Honeybells left me with an irresistible snack I kept secretly breaking into in the refrigerator to make sure they were still good 😉

Honeybell Cupcakes

The cupcakes have a wonderful light orange flavor with a hint of vanilla and are super moist.  They got a little browner than I would have liked, but they were still some of the best cupcakes I’ve had.  I meant to brush them with the candied Honeybell syrup when they came out of the oven, but forgot.  If you want to go for this step, I think you’ll really like it.  I dipped mine in the syrup as I ate it and the added moistness and flavor was insane.

As if all of this isn’t enough, I topped them with vanilla bean Italian meringue buttercream.  While it does require a candy thermometer, it is really easy to make following my step by step instructions and I guarantee it will be the best frosting you’ve ever eaten.  So smooth and silky, it’s not too sweet or too buttery, with the most delicate flavor.  You’ll never want any other frosting.

So celebrate citrus and Honeybell season with these cupcakes.  I know you’ll find a new food obsession too!

Honeybell Cupcakes

4.5 from 2 reviews
Honeybell Cupcakes
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Ingredients
Candied Honeybells
  • 2 large Honeybells sliced about ¼ inch thick
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup water
Cupcakes
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ½ vanilla bean, split and seeded
  • 1 tablespoon Honeybell zest
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • ¼ cup fresh Honeybell juice
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
Frosting
  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 5 large egg whites
  • ½ + ⅛ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 3 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ½ vanilla bean, split and seeded
Instructions
  1. Make the candied Honeybells. In a large skillet with about 2 inch sides, combine the sugar and water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, stirring frequently until the sugar has dissolved.
  2. Add the Honeybells to the skillet of syrup and cook 12-15 minutes, until soft and cooked through. Make sure the Honeybells are covered with syrup as much as possible and flip them at least once during the cooking process. Pour cool Honeybells and syrup into an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
  3. Make the cupcakes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a muffin tin with paper liners. In a large bowl cream butter, sugar, vanilla bean, and zest together until light and fluffy. I did this by hand, but a hand or stand mixer would work as well. Add the eggs and mix until once again light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and mix to combine.
  4. In a medium bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add the flour mixture and the cream and Honeybell juice to the sugar mixture alternately, beginning and ending with the flour. I did 3 installments of flour, 1 of all cream, and one of a little cream and the juice. Mix until just combined.
  5. Using a regular sized ice cream scoop, scoop batter into prepared muffin tin, filling almost all the way to the top. Bake for about 25 minutes, rotating halfway through if necessary, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cupcakes comes out with only a few moist crumbs. If you would like to brush them with the syrup from the Honeybells, this would be the time to do it. Cool completely in pan. Cupcakes can be made 1 day ahead of time.
  6. Make the frosting. In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, water, and corn syrup over medium heat, stirring frequently until the sugar is completely dissolved. Once this happens, stop stirring, attach a candy thermometer to the side of the pan, and allow the mixture to come to 240 degrees F on the thermometer. In the meantime, place the egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat on medium-high until foamy. Once foamy, add the cream of tartar and continue beating on medium-high until stiff peaks form. Be sure not to overwhip the egg whites or they will become dry.
  7. Once the eggs are whipped and the syrup is at 240, turn the eggs to medium-low, immediately remove the syrup from the heat, and begin slowly and steadily drizzling it into the eggs. If the syrup is ready before the eggs, it can be turned down or removed from the heat while the eggs finish, before being replaced on the heat to bring to temperature. If the eggs are ready before the syrup, stop mixing them until the syrup is almost ready. Turn them back to medium-high briefly before turning them back down and adding the syrup.
  8. Once the syrup has all been added, turn the mixer back to medium-high and beat the frosting (what is basically marshmallow crème and is delectable all by itself) for 10-13 minutes until the bottom of the bowl is barely warm or at room temperature. It is important for it to not be too warm or the next step will not work.
  9. Once cooled, add the butter a couple tablespoons at a time, allowing each addition to incorporate before adding another. Scrape down the bowl occasionally. Once all the butter is incorporated, add the vanilla and vanilla bean and mix to combine. Remove the bowl from the mixer and mix briefly by hand to make sure there are no clumps of butter. If the frosting is a bit soupy (because it was too warm when the butter was added) stick it in the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes, beat it again with the stand mixer. It should come together.
  10. Assemble the cupcakes. Using an offset spatula, smooth a heaping helping of frosting on the cupcakes. Place a whole, half, or quarter candied Honeybell on top of the cupcakes. May be stored at room temperature for 1 day, in the refrigerator for 3 days, or frozen, wrapped in plastic and foil and placed in a zipper bag for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature for a couple hours, keeping them wrapped in the plastic until serving.
Notes
Candied Honeybells adapted from Crepes of Wrath Cupcakes adapted from Martha Stewart

 

 

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...