Earlier this weekend, I tweeted about making some delicious margarita cupcakes. I had a whole post ready to share with you, complete with about 50 photos I took during and after. Unfortunately, iPhoto had other ideas and decided to crash during my upload. And silly me…I assumed that when I restored it and it asked me if I wanted to continue downloading the photos still on the card, that it got everything. That was so lame of me. Because? Well, those photos are gone. I reformatted my card, as I always do, and I failed to check if they really made it onto iPhoto. So. Ticked. Off.
In the grand scheme of things, it could have been worse. It could have been a major event that was on the card that I deleted. Or heck, it could have been a tornado. You know, so this really is petty. I have to remember that.
The post loses its ‘oomph’ factor without photos. Really. But I still want to post about these cupcakes that are a summery goodness come to life.
I first discovered the goodness that is this cupcake on Pinterest. Are you on Pinterest? If not, you should be. Its beautiful. But that’s a post for another day. Anyway, I followed the link to Annie’s Eats…a beautiful cooking/baking blog with gorgeous food photos (and lordy – she’s a physician! where does she have the time?!? I need to step up my game, people).
Anyway, the cupcakes. I followed Annie’s instructions to a ‘T’, as it is baking. With cooking, I like to make changes and make it my own. With baking, I am not up on my chemistry, and I have no clue as to how changing something small will affect the end product. So I followed her recipe and low and behold, those cuppycakes were deeee-licious!! (why, yes, I did taste one for QA. Don’t you?). I took her advice and delicately poked a few holes in the top with a toothpick and then brushed some tequila over the warm tops of them.
After they cooled, I set to making the Swiss meringue buttercream. I’ve made a Swiss buttercream before (Oh dear heaven on earth! I am not a fan of sugary frostings, so this is my favorite. So smooth and buttery), so I know it can take a long time and that a key is 1) dissolving the sugar in the egg whites in a double boiler, getting it to 160, and not getting any condensation in the mixer bowl, and 2) being patient. Very patient.
True to word, my meringue eventually had stiff peaks. But then it all fell apart, as she said it would, when I added the butter. So I let it go (yes, you must have a stand mixer), and took a shower and got ready. I read Annie’s notes, freaking out, because it wasn’t firming up. She often reminded posters that yes, it can take time. A *long* time (some of this can depend on the temperature and humidity of your kitchen, both of which were high that day). Finally, 45 minutes later, my patience had run out. I had a smooth, beautiful frosting, but it was not anything I could pipe on. So I put a smooth, gorgeous coating on each cupcake, sprinkled each with some grated lime zest, and finished it off with a tiny sprinkling of kosher salt.
The cupcakes were a hit. Holy delicious.
Day #2. I took the remainder of the frosting out of the fridge and stuck it under the stand mixer and let it go until it was finally the consistancy I wanted (holla!!!) That took about, oh, 30 minutes or so. I stuffed it in my pastry bag, decorated the cupcakes, topped them off with zest and salt, and carried them to a neighbor’s house. They looked pretty, if I do say so myself. However, a word for the wise: Swiss meringue buttercream does not stand up to 90+ degrees and high humidty. My pretty frosting mostly melted.
Will I make these again? Abso-freakin-lutely!!!!!! They were so good. So summery. So light. And I think you should make them too. Just be sure to read the reader questions and Annie’s answers on the post. Because they’re helpful.