Here is a delicious lemon meringue cupcake recipe that is simple to make, full of flavour and a little bit of decadence.
6 oz butter
6 oz caster sugar
6 oz self raising flour
2 egg whites
7 oz caster sugar
Pre heat the oven to 170 fan/gas 6. Line a muffin tray with 12 cupcake/muffin cases.
In a large mixing bowl or stand mixer, beat together the butter, caster sugar and the zest of the 2 lemons until pale and fluffy (this takes about 2 minutes in a stand mixer and 3-4 minute when mixing by hand). Add in the eggs one at a time and beat well between each egg. Slowly mix in the flour, being careful not to knock too much of the air out of the mixture.
Spoon the mixture into the cupcake cases, distributing the mixture evenly between all the cases. Bake for 15-20 minutes until the cupcakes are beginning to brown on top and when gently touched, they spring back. Leave to cool.
When the cakes are cold, remove from the tray. Carefully cut off the tops of the cupcakes, making a little dip in the top of each cupcake. Using the 2 lemons that you zested for the sponge mixture, squeeze lemon juice over the tops of all the cupcakes. This helps keep the cakes lovely and moist. Spoon lemon curd into the little dip you just made in each cupcake.
To make the meringue - put the 2 eggs whites in a clean and dry stand mixer or large bowl.
Put the water and the sugar in a small saucepan. Swirl them together or mix gently with a spoon but then don’t mix after this point. Turn onto a high heat and heat the sugar and water together until they reach 116 degrees celsius. If you don’t have a sugar thermometer, then this temperature is just before the sugar water starts to colour brown so watch the mixture closely until you can begin to see it brown.
Take the sugar water off the heat. Begin beating the egg whites until they thicken and form stuff peaks/hold their shape. Keep beating and drizzle the sugar water slowly into the egg whites. This will turn the egg whites into a thick and glossy mixture.
You can pipe this onto the cupcakes, or you can use a spoon. If you have a blowtorch, you can also gently scorch the tops too.
NB. Lemon curd - you can make your own lemon curd here, using the egg yolks that you discarded for the meringue, but many local producers make delicious lemon curd and its just as good as homemade.