Close your eyes and let me paint you a picture in your mind…a slightly tart lemony muffin. As you bite into it, you also get a creamy surprise, for in the center lies a soft, gooey, cheesecake-like filling. And accompanying both flavors, a cool, sweet-n-tart lemon curd for each delicious bite.
These muffins were so yummy. Served with a spoonful of lemon curd, they were wonderful.
Before I show you how to make them, let me give you a little tip about baking with lemon zest.
I started with one tablespoon of lemon zest and one cup of sugar.
Put them into a bowl.
Take your fingers and begin to smoosh the lemon zest with the sugar.
See, the real punch of flavor you get from the lemon zest is from the oil in the peel. When you begin to rub it with the sugar, it releases the oils from the zest into the sugar and intensifies the lemon flavor. Your bowl will begin to smell marvelous.
Dump your newly made “lemon sugar” into your mixing bowl with 6 tablespoons of butter.
Continue to beat until smooth and creamy.
In a separate bowl, measure out 1 1/2 cups of flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon of baking powder.
Give it a fluff with your whisk.
Measure out 1/2 cup of buttermilk. If you don’t have buttermilk, fill your 1/2 cup with 1 tablespoon of vinegar, fill it with regular milk, and let it set for 5 minutes. It will work as a substitute.
Alternate adding the flour mixture and buttermilk to your sugar/butter mixture.
When you’ve added all of both, you’ll have a nice smooth creamy batter.
Take an ice cream scoop and spray it with cooking spray. Also spray your muffin tins with cooking spray, or line them with muffin liners.
Scoop your ice scream scooper about half full and drop into the tins.
In another bowl, mix together 1/2 package of an 8 oz. cream cheese with 1/4 cup powdered sugar.
Spoon into a Ziploc baggie.
Seal the bag and using scissors, snip off one corner.
Squeeze a little dollop of your cream cheese filling into the center of each muffin batter.
Place into a 350º oven for about 15 minutes. Stick a fork into one muffin, to one side of the filling and see if it comes out clean. Leave in a few minutes longer, if need be, and check again.
Remove and cool.
Are you getting excited yet?
Serve one on a plate with a dollop of my Fuss-Free Lemon Curd and a nice cup of hot tea or coffee.
Have a bite of this wondrous creation. It’s fabulous.
We took these to our class this Sunday, and didn’t even bring home one!
Cooking with Love,