Lemon Meringue Cupcakes - Gluten free
These lemon meringue cupcakes are completely grain and sugar free - hard to believe I know!
Their secret is honey, easier to digest and more sustainable than sugar.
If you have a birthday coming up for a gluten free loved one, try these and feel proud that you have given them something both healthy and decadent.
- zest of 1 lemon and juice of half
- 3 large tsp of nut butter - (almond, cashew, brazil, sunflower seed...)
- 2 dessert spoons of mild honey (runny or set)
- 50 ml vegetable oil (organic rapeseed, grapeseed or sunflower)
- 3 large free range eggs
- 6 oz mixed finely ground nuts (brazils, blanched almonds, cashews, blanched hazels, or almond flour)
- 1 level tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tsp vinegar (cider or white wine)
- Lemon Curd:
- 3 large free range egg yolks (save one white separately for meringue)
- 1/4 cup of mild honey
- 1/4 cup of lemon juice (or mango)
- 1/4 cup of butter cut into lumps
- Marshmallow Meringue:
- 1/4 cup mild creamy honey
- 1 egg white (saved from the curd)
- 1 tsp bourbon vanilla extract - or similar
Adapted from milkforthemorningcake.blogspot.com
For the cupcakes:
Preheat the oven to 160C fan assisted (175C without) and set out 8 muffin cases in a bun tray - fill any spare holes with water.
Separate the eggs and put the yolks in one mixing bowl and whites in another. Add vinegar to the whites and beat until stiff peaks form - set aside.
To the yolks add lemon zest, honey, nut butter, bicarb and oil and beat until smooth before adding the ground nuts and stirring until incorporated.
Gently fold in the beaten egg whites until no lumps of white are visible and spoon into the waiting cases - or pour into a jug and pour into the cases. Fill them about 3/4 full.
Bake for about 20 minutes or until risen, golden brown on top and springy to the touch. Cool on a rack.
For the Lemon curd:
In a bain marie or a heat proof bowl over a pan of gently simmering water, mix the egg yolks, honey and lemon juice with a whisk. Keep stirring as it warms up.
Then start adding lumps of butter, one at a time. Stir constantly until each lump has melted and then add the next. When all the butter has been added, keep stirring slowly, until the mixture starts to thicken. This should take about 5-8 minutes after the last bit of butter has been added.
Take care not to let it curdle by stirring constantly - but gently! When it looks about custard consistency take it off the heat and put the bottom of the bowl into cold water to stop the cooking. Allow to cool and spread onto the cakes.
If the cakes have risen too high - just cut off the top or scoop out a little space for the lemon curd to sit in.
For the marshmallow meringue:
Beat the egg white to soft peaks in a medium sized bowl set on a cloth to stop it moving about.
Heat the honey in a small milk pan and gently simmer until it reaches the semi hard ball stage - a drop in a glass of cold water will form a firm ball when you pick it out and squeeze it. Don't let the honey turn too dark. If it starts to look darker than deep gold, get it off the heat immediately and get on with the next stage.
Pour the molten honey in a thin stream onto the egg whites, beating with the electric hand whisk as you pour. This requires the bowl to be held by someone else or set on a cloth so it doesn't spin round! You need to work fast to get the honey on the egg whites while it is boiling hot, so it will cook them, and before it turns into toffee! Quickly scrape the last bits of honey out before they set.
When all the honey has been added, throw in the vanilla - still whisking - and beat until the mixture looks opaque and marshmallowy - it should be pretty thick and fluffy. The heat of the honey cooks the egg white enough so that it should be absolutely fine for children to eat - if you're nervous, use pasteurised eggs.
Spoon into a piping bag - or a freezer bag which you cut the corner off after filling - and pipe onto the cooled lemon curd in a theatrical swirl. The filling stays soft, so you can leave the piping for a while if the curd isn't cool yet.
Arrange on a gorgeous cake stand or pretty plate and dive in!