About this recipe:This is one of my favourite cupcakes to bake and my absolute favourite to eat! It’s the perfect cupcake and they are lovely to enjoy in the springtime sunshine. They are a fresh light cupcake, great for garden parties or summer time birthdays. They are perfect beside a cup of earl grey tea.
Pop the oven on to 180 C / Gas 4. Place your paper cupcake cases in the 12 hole muffin tray.
In a mixing bowl, beat the butter, sugar, honey and lemon zest together really well. You may wish to use an electrical whisk to ensure this is done thoroughly.
Drop in the eggs, one by one, and beat well after each addition. Add the flour gradually until all the ingredients are combined. You may wish to use and electrical mixer for this stage too.
Once you've done that and the mixture is completely combined, spoon the mixture evenly into the cupcake cases on the baking tray; only fill 2/3 of the cupcake case so the cupcakes have room to rise without overflowing and becoming messy.
Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the cupcakes become golden on top. Move them to a wire rack and allow them to cool.
For the buttercream:
Place the milk into a saucepan with lavender and bring to the boil. Remove from heat. Allow the lavender to infuse with the milk and set it aside to cool for 15 minutes. Cover the saucepan.
Pour the lavender milk back into a cup and place in the fridge to fully cool for an extra 30 minutes. Once cooled, remove from the refrigerator and strain to remove lavender buds. Set milk aside.
In a mixing bowl beat the sugar and butter together until the butter turns to a pale ivory colour. At this point add half of the lavender milk and purple food colouring and mix well to combine these ingredients. At this point I advise to taste the frosting, add more lavender milk if needed to enhance taste.
Once you have the flavour you like, add your buttercream to the piping bag using a spatula or spoon and attach the star nozzle. Pipe your desired design on your cupcake.
Decorate with lilac sprinkles or edible sugar flowers then enjoy!
When using the piping bag you should push mainly with the palm of your hand, rather than squeezing with your fingers. To get the feel of how hard to squeeze for each technique, practice piping on a sheet of greaseproof paper. The size and shape of the icing depends on how hard you squeeze, as well as on the size of the opening in the tip. The more you practice, the easier the techniques will be when decorating cakes.
Really enjoyed the taste of the lemon in the sponge & the lavender in the icing. I thought the sponge would be too heavy, given the recipe only uses plain flour & no baking powder, but it was a nice sponge. My only gripe is the icing came out quite runny, even though I used half milk as advised. Next time I might use the food processor as advised & chill the icing in the fridge to stiffen up before applying onto cakes. - 27 Jul 2014