When I lived in Michigan, Michael’s little sister and I spent every weekend making cupcakes. She had taken a liking to baking but is a hard tongue to please. I thought the rainbow cupcakes would be a hit, but she was unimpressed. I had to bring out the big kid flavors. Writing this post (again) makes me remember how much I loved baking with her, as it was a chance for us to hang out, talk, and learn something new together. For such a young age, she impressed me with her knowledge daily.
For the Cupcakes:
- 1½ c all-purpose flour
- 1½ t baking powder
- ¼ t salt
- ½ c unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 c granulated sugar
- 2 eggs, at room temperature
- Zest and juice of 1½ limes
- 2 T tequila
- ¼ t vanilla extract
- ½ c buttermilk
To Brush the Cupcakes:
- 1 to 2 T tequila
- For the Tequila-Lime Frosting:
- 1 c unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2¾ c powdered sugar
- 1 T lime juice
- 2 T tequila
- Pinch of coarse salt
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a standard muffin tin with paper liners; set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt; set aside. In an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat the butter and sugar together until pale, light, and fluffy (about 5 minutes). Reduce the mixer speed to medium and add the eggs one at at time, mixing thoroughly after each addition. Scrape the sides of the bowl and add the lime zest, lime juice, vanilla extract and tequila. Mix until combined. (The mixture may start to look curdled at this point, but don’t worry, it will all come back together). Reduce the mixer speed low. Add the dry ingredients in three batches, alternating with the buttermilk in two batches. Mix only until just incorporated, using a rubber spatula to give it one last mix by hand.
Put the batter into the muffin cups. Bake for approximately 15 minutes or until just slightly golden, rotating the pan at the halfway point. Allow cupcakes to cool for 5 to 10 minutes, and then remove to a cooling rack. Brush the tops of the cupcakes with the 1 to 2 tablespoons of tequila. Set the cupcakes aside to cool completely before frosting them.
To make the frosting, whip the butter on medium-high speed of an electric mixer using the whisk attachment for 5 minutes. Reduce the speed to medium-low, and gradually add the powdered sugar, mixing and scraping the sides of the bowl until all is incorporated. Give it a mix on medium speed for about 30 seconds. Add the lime juice, tequila and salt mix on medium-high speed until incorporated and fluffy. If the frosting appears a bit too soft, add some additional sugar, one spoonful at a time until desired consistency is reached. Frost cupcakes and garnish, if desired, with lime zest, an additional sprinkling of salt and a lime wedge.
You can garnish the top with thin lemon wedges, dipped in sugar/water/salt and then torched to dehydrate.
*Note: If you would prefer to not use liquor in these cupcakes, just substitute 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract to the frosting.
What’s your favorite alcohol inspired cupcake?