When I was little, my favorite cake was lemon chiffon cake...not your typical taste buds for an 8 year old, but I guess I just have a weakness for all things lemon including lemon bars and lemon cupcakes. The frosting turned out a little runny, so next time, I'll try adding a little heavy whipping cream to stiffen it up. I also don't have a cooling wrack, but you can tip your cupcakes sideways to keep them from sweating on the bottom.
1 1/2 c. (3 sticks) of butter
3 c. cake flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 c. sugar
5 large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
4 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
Zest of 2 lemons (just zest the other lemons before you squeeze them)
1 c. buttermilk (if you don't have buttermilk, you can add1 tbsp. of white vinegar or lemon juice to a measuring cup and then add enough milk to bring the liquid to 1 c.)
Preheat oven to 325. Line 2 12-cup muffin tins with cupcake liners
Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Unfortunately, I don't have an electric mixer, but I highly recommend one. However, using a whisk is a great arm workout.
Sift together flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in a medium bowl. Set aside. Add eggs to butter and sugar mixture one at a time, beating to incorporate after each addition. Beat in vanilla, lemon juice, and lemon zest.
Alternate adding flour mixture and buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture and beating until fully incorporated.
Add batter until muffin cups are about 3/4 full. Try using a cookie scoop if you're a messy pourer like me.
Bake about 20-25 minutes or just until a toothpick inserted into the center of one of the cupcakes comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool completely.
Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting
1 (16 ounce) package powdered sugar
1 (8 ounce) package PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Beat sugar, cream cheese, butter and juice until well blended. Frost cupcakes. Try making a makeshift piping bag by cutting the corner off a regular plastic baggie.