This past weekend was definitely festive with both the Kentucky Derby and Cinco de Mayo falling on the same day. To celebrate, my friends had a Cinco de Mayo barbecue featuring carne asada, grilled pineapple, and of course, margaritas! I was planning on making margarita cookies from this recipe I saw on Smitten Kitchen. But I didn’t have any tequila on hand and didn’t think it’d be worth it to buy a bottle if I was only using a few tablespoons. (I guess I could have saved the rest for margaritas and tequila shots :P)
So instead, I decided to make Corona cupcakes from this recipe on Erica’s Sweet Tooth. But since I couldn’t find any Corona in our house, I used Tecate instead. The recipe is a pretty standard cupcake recipe, except that it uses beer for moisture instead of milk or water. Although I couldn’t really taste the beer and I’m pretty sure none of my friends noticed it, the cupcakes were still delicious!
I was a little too lazy to make my own cream cheese frosting, so I just added the zest and juice of one lime to some leftover store bought frosting sitting in my refrigerator. I think it was really the frosting that did it for me. Yes, the cupcake is super moist and tasty, but the frosting is what made me want to eat another. The zest and juice really packed a lot of flavor into the frosting without making it too sour. I’ll probably make it again for another cake/cupcake in the future since it was so good (and super easy to make).
These cupcakes are a great way to celebrate Cinco de Mayo or kick off summer! Which I can finally do, now that my finals are over! 😀 However, life as a grad student doesn’t include any summer vacation – only long hours in the lab. Call me a nerd, but I’m super excited about it!
For the cupcakes:
3/4 cups unsalted butter, at room temperature
1-3/4 cup sugar
2-1/2 cup flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3 eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp lime zest (I used the zest of one lime)
1 cup Blue Moon or Corona or Tecate beer, plus more for brushing on tops
1/4 cup milk
Lime wedges and sanding sugar for garnish (I skipped this)
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line 24 muffin tins with cupcake liners.
2. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.
3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
4. Add eggs, beating after each addition then add the vanilla and zest. (I apparently can’t read, and added all of the eggs in at once. They turned out fine)
5. Combine milk and beer and alternatively add this mixture and the flour mixture to the butter/sugar mixture with the mixer on low speed, starting and ending with the flour.
6. Fill the cupcake liners 2/3 full and bake for 18 minutes, or until cake tester comes out clean. (I made 13 regular sized cupcakes and 32 mini-cupcakes)
7. When cupcakes are done, poke holes in the tops of the cupcakes with toothpicks and brush some beer on each while still warm. (I tried doing this, but the spooned the beer on top instead. It didn’t really work since the beer just spilled over the cupcake. It probably works better brushing the beer on top, but this step doesn’t really seem to be that necessary)
8. Let cupcakes cool and frost with lime cream cheese frosting.
For super easy lime cream cheese frosting:
1/4 cup store bought cream cheese frosting
Zest and juice of one lime
1. Add lime zest and juice to cream cheese frosting
2. Stir until get desired consistency.