It’s summer! Friday was the first official day of summer, also known as the Summer Solstice or the day with the greatest angle of insolation for all you science nerds out there. Also, in New York City the sunsets at about 9:15 P.M. on June 21, not 10 P.M. I just want to clear up any misconceptions, you know what I’m talking about.
Although it is officially summer, it doesn’t feel like summer quite yet. Wednesday is the last day of school and that’s when summer really begins! I’m super pumped. Only 2 1/2 more days and I’m free for two whole months.
I made these cupcakes for Shirley’s birthday. She teaches across the hall from me and is a riot. Shirley is always available when you need someone to cover your class for a minute or need an extra supply, she’s super helpful like that. She also has funny stories and a great laugh. Shirley isn’t much of a drinker so she often passes on my cupcakes, apparently I make a lot a of boozy cupcakes. These cupcakes maybe singular in theme, but they are high on flavor.
Strawberries scream summer and these cupcakes are chocked full of strawberries. There are strawberries in the cake, in the middle, and in the frosting. The cupcake portion is a simple yellow cake; totally light and tender. The bits of fresh strawberries add freshness and juiciness inside.
My favorite part is the macerated strawberries in the middle. This little surprise is fresh, light, and orange scented. It’s not too often you get fresh fruit in a cupcake and they make this dessert almost healthy, almost! As always the Swiss meringue buttercream is lovely; slightly sweet, smooth & creamy, and full of strawberry flavor with the pureed strawberries added in. This is the cupcake you need to kick off summer!
One Year Ago – Lemon Blueberry Scones
Adapted from Brown Eyed Baker
Yield – 12 cupcakes
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
1 egg white
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2/3 +1/4 cup flour
3 tablespoons cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup whole milk
2/3 cup finely chopped strawberries
- Preheat the oven to 350 ˚F and line your cupcake tins with paper liners.
- Add the butter and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment. Beat for about 3 minutes or until the mixture is pale yellow.
- Beat in the egg completely and then beat in the egg white. Beat in the vanilla. Scrape the bowl as needed.
- Sift together the flours, powder, and salt onto parchment paper and add into the butter in two addition with the milk in between on low speed. Mix until just combined.
- Fold in the strawberries and use a stand ice cream scoop to portion the batter into cupcake tins.
- Bake 17 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- Let cool completely on a wire rack.
Macerated Strawberry Filling
2/3 cup finely chopped strawberries
2 tablespoons sugar
1/8 teaspoon orange extract
- Chop the strawberries into small pieces and add to a small bowl.
- Add the sugar and extract to the bowl and stir. Set aside while the cupcakes cool.
- Cut a cone out of each cupcake and cut off the tip of the cone.
- Fill each opening with the strawberries and replaces the top
Strawberry Swiss Meringue Buttercream
4 egg whites
1 1/4 cup sugar
pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cup fresh strawberries
whole strawberries for garnish
- Place a small pot with 1/2-inch of water on the stove. Place the bowl of a stand mixer in the pot of water.
- Add the egg whites, sugar, and pinch of salt to the mixing bowl. Heat and whisk until the mixture is smooth when you feel it.
- Remove the bowl from the pot of water and whisk with mixer until the bowl is cool to the touch and there are stiff peaks.
- Beat in the butter 1 tablespoon at a time. Beat in the vanilla. Scrape the bowl as needed.
- Roughly chop and then puree the strawberries in a food processor.
- Add the pureed strawberries and beat the frosting until everything is light and fluffy.
- Add the frosting to a piping bag with a large star tip. Pipe onto each cupcake.
- Cut a slice of strawberry and place on top.