These cupcakes are light and airy with a delicate meringue topping. You will need a sugar thermometer for the meringue - don't be put off, it's really easy. If you happen to have a blowtorch, you will get a professional and impressive finish.
125g unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups caster sugar
grated rind 1 lemon
3 tbsp lemon juice
1 1/4 cups plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup milk
1 cup lemon curd
2 egg whites
1 /4 tsp cream of tartar
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
Preheat oven to 180C.
Cream the butter with sugar until it is light and fluffy. Add lemon rind and juice and mix well. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until combined.
Sift flour and baking powder together and add to the mix, alternately with the milk.
Spoon into 12 lined muffin tins, filling almost to the top.
Bake in oven for 25 minutes until cakes are lightly browned and cooked when tested with a skewer. Remove from oven and cool on wire racks. When cool, scoop a small piece of cake from out of the top and place a spoonful of lemon curd. Top with meringue and brown with a blowtorch, if desired.
To make meringue:
Using an electric mixer with a whisk attachment, beat egg whites at low speed until they foam, add salt and cream of tartar, increase speed and beat to soft peaks. Reduce speed to low as you prepare sugar syrup.
Bring the sugar and water to a simmer, until sugar is dissolved. Increase heat and cook until soft ball stage (240F or 116C on a sugar thermometer).
Slowly drizzle the syrup into the egg whites, beating on low speed. Try to avoid the edge of the bowl and the wires of the whisk. Increase speed to medium and keep beating for 10 minutes, until the mixture is cool and the egg whites form stiff, shiny peaks.