Gingerbread Cupcakes with Lemon Buttercream Icing

Roopa

I’m feeling pretty motivated to try out new recipes right now, so today I decided on a gingerbread cupcake with lemon buttercream icing. I was a little skeptical of the ginger-lemon combination, but google informed me that it’s an excellent pairing. To be perfectly honest, I’m not the best judge of anything where ginger is involved anyways; I got a chunk of it in my tea once, and I’ve sort of lost my appreciation of all things ginger since.

That said, I’m pretty impressed with how this recipe turned out. There are a few tweaks that need to be made, but the taste was pretty excellent, which means a lot coming from someone as anti-ginger as myself. My parents approved of them quite heartily, which also means a lot since they don’t typically like baked goods. They didn’t rise as well as I wanted (but I did open the oven door a lot since I was unsure of bake time), and the top came out a touch crispy, but definitely not bad for a first iteration. 

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I adapted the recipe from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World for these cupcakes. I am not actually vegan – just egg free – so vegan recipes are a much easier starting point. I also didn’t have a number of things from the original recipe, so I tried to make it work. I did a mini batch since it was just a trial run, so it only made 9 medium sized cupcakes. 

GINGERBREAD CUPCAKES (9 medium)

  • ½ cup + 2 tbsp. flour
  • ½ tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. baking soda
  • 1.5 tsp. ground ginger
  • ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp. ground clove
  • pinch of salt
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • ¼ cup oil
  • ¼ cup milk 
  • 2 tbsp. yogurt
  • 1/8 tsp. maple extract
  • ~1/8 tsp. lemon extract

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350F and line cupcake tins.*
  2. Mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, clove, and salt.
  3. Whisk together sugar, oil, milk, yogurt, and extracts.
  4. Add wet ingredients to flour mixture and mix together. Do not overmix. 
  5. Fill liners ~2/3 full, and bake for ~15 – 20 minutes, rotating pan halfway through.

*Next time, I would try baking at 325F and seeing how that works. The edges were rather crisp, which likely means that the oven was too hot. 

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Benefit of living at home: copious amounts of spices

I used my favourite lemon buttercream icing from www.sweetapolita.com; I’m still a bit dubious about this flavour combination, but I guess we’ll see how people like it. I made such a small amount that I left out the lemon extract and added a little bit more lemon juice instead. 

LEMON BUTTERCREAM

  • 60g unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ heaping tsp. lemon zest
  • 1.25 cups icing sugar
  • ¾ tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp. milk
  • pinch of salt
  • yellow food colouring

DIRECTIONS

  1. Cream butter and lemon zest thoroughly.
  2. Add in icing sugar, and beat on medium speed until well mixed.
  3. Add lemon juice, milk, salt, and food colouring, and beat until everything is well blended. 

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