Tag Archives: meringue

S’mores Cupcakes

19 Apr

S'mores CupcakeMy favorite part of summer is sitting around a campfire and eating s’mores. After a long day of swimming and running around, there is nothing better than curling up in a flannel blanket, watching the night sky and consuming this sticky delight. The smell of toasting wood, combined with the fluff of the marshmallow melting into the creamy chocolate that’s barely being supported by crisp graham crackers is a staple at any outdoor gathering. I always compete with others to see who can get their marshmallow the most caramelized without burning it, dropping it, or setting it on fire. Naturally, there are always a few fluffy casualties in the process.

Making s’mores indoors has never been a successful experiment for me. I’ve blown up far too many marshmallows in the microwave. Plus, I miss the smell of the firewood that goes along with the great taste. As a quick fix to tide me over until summer arrives, I came up with the S’mores Cupcake to satisfy my cravings. Although I can’t promise an authentic camping experience from consuming one of these, it will make you feel better until you can get your hands on the real thing.

If you had any meringue left over from making our Lemon Meringue Pie, you can use it to top these cupcakes!

S’mores Cupcakes

Chocolate Cupcake

1/3 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder
1/2 cup boiling water
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 whole large egg
1 large egg yolk
4 graham crackers

In a small bowl whisk together the cocoa powder and the water until the cocoa powder is dissolved and let the mixture cool to room temperature. In a bowl whisk together the flour, the baking soda, and a pinch of salt. In another bowl, cream together the butter and the sugar. Add the whole egg and the egg yolk, mixing until batter is smooth. Alternate adding cocoa with flour mixture, mixing well after each addition.
Crumble graham crackers and add 1 1/2 Tbsp to each unlined cupcake pan. Press graham cracker down firmly and fill the rest of the tin with the cupcake batter; about 2/3 full. Bake in a 350°F oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Meringue

6 egg whites
3 Tbsp granulated sugar
a pinch of cream of tartar

Whip whites and cream of tartar until frothy, and slowly stream in sugar. Whip until glossy, soft-peaks form.

Assembly

When completely cool, top with meringue. Happy Trails!

Lemon Meringue Pie

14 Apr

Lemon Meringue Pie

These days, my sous chef friend Lia and I find that running is the best way to discover new places, enjoy the weather, and makes an excellent excuse to treat ourselves to something sugary and delicious afterward.

On an extra-sunny day we stumbled across a local farmers market. The wonderful smells and bright colors were bursting from the stands of cucumbers, watermelons, oranges and bell peppers. Inspiration struck us when we saw a grand pyramid of lemons. What’s the old adage? When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade, right?

Nope, we were going to make Lemon Meringue Pie.
This recipe comes from Lia’s personal collection. She is constantly developing and baking various recipes. I, of course, am always on hand to assist and to taste. Her version of this classic uses a shortbread crust instead of the usual pie crust. I find that the sandy texture of the shortbread is less overwhelming with the lemon curd than a traditional crust.

Lemon Meringue Pie

Lemon Curd

3/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp lemon zest
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3 eggs
1/2 butter, cubed

In a 2 quart saucepan, combine lemon juice, lemon zest, sugar, eggs, and butter. Cook over medium-low heat until thick enough to hold marks from whisk, and first bubble appears on surface, about 6 minutes.

Shortbread Pie Crust

1 cup butter
1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp baking powder

Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Slowly mix in flour and baking powder. Press dough evenly into a 9 inch pie pan. Bake for 15 minutes, or until light golden brown.

Meringue

6 egg whites
3 Tbsp granulated sugar
a pinch of cream of tartar

Whip whites and cream of tartar until frothy, and slowly stream in sugar. Whip until glossy, soft-peaks form.

Assembly

When pie shell is fully cooled, add lemon curd and top with meringue. Divide and enjoy!

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