So, Thea’s birthday is tomorrow and while we quickly celebrated on Friday in the bake shop before she went out of town, I haven’t had time to share her birthday cupcakes here until now.
When I first met Thea, it was when she did her wedding tasting at the bake shop. And during the tasting, she asked me to make her Lavender French Macarons, and I politely said NO WAY haha. At the bake shop, we try not do deviate from our menu as we have so many flavors as it is, and we know we can get the ingredients we need for all of them. I always want to make people happy, but creating new a recipes is a lot of work, so we can’t always accommodate when someone asks us for something off our menu. Not to mention, lavender isn’t my favorite thing - so I tend to stay away from this flavor in general.
So when I asked Thea what she wanted me to make for her birthday this year, she of course said - Lavender something. And, I said OKAY, I guess it's time I make you something lavender! I made her bring in her own lavender, obviously, because we don’t have any in the kitchen at the bake shop. And I happened to have some fresh sage left over from another project, so I created a Lemon Lavender Sage Cupcake, just for Thea. Don’t anyone dare try to order these in the shop because we will politely say no, haha. They are here for you to bake at home at your leisure anytime you like! This is a perfect spring cupcake with a sweet lemon cake, lavender buttercream, and topped with a fresh sage leaf.
Lavender Lemon Sage Cupcakes
2 teaspoons dried lavender
1 cup water
1 stick (113 grams) organic salted butter, softened
170 grams (3/4 cup) organic cane sugar
2 teaspoons organic lemon flavor (like Frontier Co-Op)
1/2 teaspoon organic vanilla extract
2 organic large eggs
170 grams (1 cup plus 3 tablespoons) all natural cake flour (like Bob’s Red Mill)
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 cup organic milk
2 sticks (226 grams) organic salted butter, softened
454 grams (3 cups plus 3 tablespoons) organic powdered sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons lavender flavor
fresh organic sage leaves (optional)
Method Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a cupcake pan with liners.
To make the lavender flavor: In a small pot, add the 1 cup of water and the lavender. Bring to a boil, then simmer until the mixture has reduced to about 2 tablespoons. Set aside to let cool completely before using in the frosting. I made this the day before and just left it out until the next day.
To make the batter: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the butter, sugar, lemon flavor, and vanilla extract. Mix on low until combined and there are no butter chunks.
Add the eggs and mix until combined.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the cake flour, baking powder, and sea salt.
Add the milk into the butter mixture and add the flour mixture on top, mix on low until combined into a smooth batter.
Scoop cupcake batter into each cup, filling three-quarters full.
Bake for 20 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
Once the cupcakes are cool, start the frosting.
To make the frosting: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the butter, powdered sugar and lavender flavor (note – if you don’t make your own lavender flavor 2 tablespoons is A LOT, try 1/2 teaspoon if you have purchased a lavender flavor or extract). Mix on low until combined, then speed mixer up to high for 1 minute or until light and fluffy. Transfer to a piping bag with decorating tip #808 (or no tip at all).
Pipe frosting onto each cupcake, sprinkle with dried lavender (optional).
Place a sage leaf on top (optional).
Store in an airtight container or a cake dome for up to 3 days.
Gluten Free – Replace the cake flour with 170 grams (1 cup plus 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon) Namaste Organic Perfect Flour Blend.
High Altitude – Bake at 350°F for 17 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.