AKA: Key Lime cupcakes filled with Sweet/Tart Key Lime Custard, topped with Vanilla Buttercream and a sprinkle of Toasted Coconut!
That's a mouthful...and so are these! They practically melt in your mouth, and are guaranteed to make you feel as if you were laying on a hammock, swaying in the sweet tropical breeze as you listen to the crystal blue waves crash on the sandy shore....
Hello? You still there...okee dokee...back to reality...and recipes. :)
Sweet/Tart Key Lime Custard
6oz cream cheese (softened to room temp)
7 oz sweetened condensed milk
5 oz Key Lime juice
In a mixer, beat 6 oz cream cheese until light and fluffy. Add 7 oz sweetened condensed milk and 5 oz Key Lime juice (I like Nellie and Joes). Mix on low to incorporate, then mix on medium for a minute or two until thick and mixed well. Cover with plastic and refrigerate at least 2 hours.
For 36 Cupcakes:
2 1/2 C. unbleached, all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 stick (1 C.) sweet cream, unsalted butter (softened to room temp)
2 1/4 C. Sugar
3 eggs (at room temp)
1 tsp. vanilla
Zest of 2 limes (totally optional)
1/4 C. Key Lime juice (I prefer Nellie and Joes)
1 C. sour cream
Preheat oven to 325. Line cupcake tins with paper liners.
Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
In a large mixer bowl, using paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each; scrape down sides and bottom of bowl often.
Stir in the vanilla, zest and Key Lime juice. With the mixer on low, alternately add the sour cream and dry ingredients; mixing just until incorporated.
Fill cupcake liners just a TOUCH over half full (trust me on this one). Bake at 325 for 20-25 minutes. Testing for done with a toothpick.
Allow to cool on rack for 10 minutes before removing from pan. Allow to cool COMPLETELY before filling and frosting.
Vanilla Buttercream Frosting:
4 C. sifted powdered sugar
3 tsp. meringue powder
1 C. (2 sticks), sweet cream, unsalted butter at room temperature
1 tsp. clear vanilla extract
2 Tbsp. whipping cream
Using the paddle attachment of your mixer, beat sugar, meringue powder and butter on low speed until incorporated. Increase to medium speed and beat for 3 minutes.
Add vanilla and cream. Continue to beat on medium speed for 1 more minute. If needed, add more cream to reach desired spreading consistency.
This will be enough to thinly frost 30 cupcakes...or to thickly frost 15.
Two ways to fill:
A) Fit a piping bag with a #5 or larger tip, fill with Key Lime custard. Push tip halfwa into top center of cupcake and squeeze about 1/2 Tbsp filling into center. Stop squeezing and remove. Continue with remaining cupcakes.
B) Using a teaspoon, cut a small "core" out of the center of cupcake. Fill with 1/2 Tbsp. filling and replace "core". Don't worry it'll be covered with frosting and no one will notice.
Frost cupcakes as desired and sprinkle with toasted coconut. Keep at room temperature for up to 3 days... if they last that long!