Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Lemon-Glazed Miniature Tea Cakes.

The only thing better than cake is mini cake. 
Especially if you make up for the fact that its mini by adding a glaze and a frosting. Because, really. What goes better with sugar than more sugar? 
Let's break this down.
These bite-size cakes were light, sweet, and summery, and even though I burnt my hand three times, shattered an egg, grated my finger, and broke a container of cooking spray, they were totally worth it in the end. 

It was one of those days. 

Please tell me you have them too.
The cake itself was a yellow vanilla-buttermilk cake that I spiked with lemon zest; they're nowhere near as lemony as these cupcakes, but with the glaze and frosting, they were perfect.

Aren't they cute? 
I like to think they're cuddling. 

Or maybe the one on the right is just sleepy and tired of being photographed from every angle?   
We all need a shoulder sometimes.

Lemon-Glazed Miniature Tea Cakes

Printable Recipe

1 cup butter, softened
1 3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk
The zest from one lemon

Lemon Glaze
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Lemon Buttercream
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup confectioners' sugar
1/4 of the juice & zest from one lemon
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease mini muffin pans.

In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar at medium speed until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in vanilla extract.

In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and cream of tartar. Add to butter mixture, alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Stir in lemon zest.

Spoon batter into mini muffin pans, filling a little bit less than 3/4 full. Bake for 12 -15 or until done. Immediately remove cakes to wire racks and allow to cool (be careful not to burn your fingers).

When the cakes have cooled completely, make the lemon glaze. In a small bowl, combine confectioners' sugar and lemon juice. Brush on cooled cakes.

*For the lemon buttercream, combine butter, sugar, and salt and beat until well combined. Add lemon juice, zest, and vanilla and continue to beat for another 3 to 5 minutes, or until creamy and the consistency desired, then pipe onto cakes. (I used a Wilton #1M tip for these cakes). You may have to add a little more lemon juice, depending on how thick you want your frosting to be, or more zest, if you want a more stronger lemon flavor.

*Note: I scaled down the buttercream recipe so that it only makes about 1 cup of frosting, just enough to pipe the stars on top. If you plan on using more frosting, I would double this recipe.

Makes 72 cakes.

Source: Mini lemon cakes and glaze barely adapted from Holiday Celebrations, 2008. Lemon buttercream from the Sprinkles Cupcakes Bakery.