Wednesday, October 8, 2008

VANILLA & LEMON CUPCAKES

When my good friend Corinne asked me to bake cupcakes for her teenage daughter's 14th Birthday Party, I didn't think twice and said "yes, sure" enthusiastically! I had never prepared anything for such an occasion nor did I ever bake/cook for crowds and thought that it might be a good way to put my culinary "talents" to the test...

Ever since I've known Samira (Corinne's daughter) she hasn't stopped raving about Rai's (at "Ugly Fruit") "Champagne Cupcakes" that she had tasted at our "Foodbloggers' Picnic" back in June 2007 (see my article). They had left such a mark on her that she can't forget them. The subject always comes back in most of our food conversations.

As Corinne is not a big fan of frostings or icings and she knows that I'm addicted to baking, cooking and anything that revolves around the culinary world, she naturally pictured me as the official baker for Samira's party. When it comes to making dainty and rich little cupcakes, the American way, topped with lots of buttercream, frosting, icing as well as girly decorations, I'm unfailingly ready to get started anytime!!!

So, on the day before the event, I made both the buttercream and frosting I needed for my "Vanilla & Lemon Cupcakes" (recipe below) and my "Dark Chocolate & Peanut Butter Cupcakes" (recipe soon). On the same day, I arrived at my frien'd place at 12h00. We ate and then I started getting (hyper)active in the kitchen. Everything went suprisingly smoothly, eventhough I am not used to bake/cook for more than 4 people. After three hours of buzzing frenetically like a bee in spring, my 50 cupcakes were ready and looked amazingly good. Wow, I didn't know that I could whip up such perfect cupcakes!

~ Birthday girl ~
At around 16h00, we were invaded by a crew of 20 frantic, energy-loaded, yet very polite adolescents who arrived in a blitz and literally assaulted the table where all the food was. In a matter of minutes (or should I say seconds?!), nearly all the cupcakes had disappeared and most of the other goodies (tasty sandwiches & a delicious cake that Corinne had made) had vanished. It was as if a pack piranhas or flying grasshoppers had eaten their way through the living room (a good sign)!

Many of her friends congratulated us on the food and said that they had enjoyed everything. Phew! A real relief for both of us.

A few days later, I was pleasantly surprised to find a great postcard in my letterbox. Samira had written some heartwarming words of thanks and expressed her gratefulness for the work I did. She had truely been impressed by my cupcakes and thanked me for taking the time to bake them. How sweet of her!

Those dainty "Vanilla & Lemon Cupcakes" are really fabulous whether it is texture- or taste-wise. The cake part is feathery, soft, moist, delicately vanilla flavored and rises beautifully, and the buttercream topping brings this gustatory experience to a higher level of delightfulness with it's smooth, fluffy, silky, wonderfully buttery as well as lemony aromas and it's pristine ivory color that'll blow your mind. Truely droolworthy!

~ Vanilla & Lemon Cupcakes ~
Cupcake recipe by Amy Sedaris "I Like You: Hospitality Under The Influence"
, buttercream recipe by Dorie Greenspan "Baking From My Home To Yours" and adapted by Rosa @ Rosa's Yumy Yums.

Makes about 24 cupcakes.

Ingredients for the "Cupcakes":

1 1/2 Sticks (180g) unsalted butter
1 1/2 Cups (315g) Castor sugar
2 Eggs (~63g)
2 Tsps Pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 Tsps Baking powder
1/2 Tsp Salt
2 1/2 Cups (319g) Plain white flour
1 1/4 Cups (300ml) Milk
Ingredients for the "Buttercream":
1 Cup (210g) Castor sugar
4 Large Egg whites (~63g eggs)
3 Sticks (12oz/360g) Unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 Cup (60ml) Fresh lemon juice (from 2 large lemons)
1 Tsp Pure vanilla extract
A few drops lemon essence

Method for the "Cupcakes":
1. Turn the oven on to 190° C (375° F).
2. In a medium bowl, mix together all dry ingredients. Set aside.
3. In a big bowl, cream the butter until smooth.
4. Add the sugar and cream again until the mixture is white, light and fluffy.

5. Add the 2 eggs, one at a time while beating/mixing well until blended.
6. Add the vanilla, then the dry ingredients and the milk, alternati
vely, while mixing well, until all ingredients are totally combined (homogenous batter).
7. Pour into individual baking cups, until they are about 2/3 full.
8. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of one cupcake comes out clean.
Method for the "Lemon Buttercream":
9. Put the sugar and egg whites in a mixer bowl or another large heatproof bowl, fit the bowl over a plan of simmering water and whisk constantly, keeping the mixture over the heat, until it feels hot to the touch, about 3 minutes (the sugar should be dissolved, and the mixture will look like shiny marshmallow cream).
10. Remove the bowl from the heat.
11. Working with the whisk attachment or with a hand mixer, beat the meringue on medium speed until it is cool, about 5 minutes.
12. Switch to the paddle attachment if you have one, and add the butter a stick at a time, beating until smooth.
13. Once all the butter is in, beat the buttercream on medium-high speed until it is thick and very smooth, 6-10 minutes (during this time the buttercream may curdle or separate – just keep beating and it will come together again).
14. On medium speed, gradually beat in the lemon juice, waiting until each addition is absorbed before adding more, then the vanilla and the lemon essence (you should have a shiny smooth, velvety, pristine white buttercream).
15. Decorate your cupcakes with the buttercream.

Remarks:
I flavored my buttercream with vanilla and added a few drops lemon essence, but you are free to flavor your buttercream as you wish (essences, zests, spices, etc...) and to replace the lemon juice by any other liquid (same quantity - whisky, orange juice, coffee, etc..).
You can keep your buttercream in the fridge for up to a week. In that case, press a piece of plastic against the surface of the buttercream.

Once you get the buttercream out of the fridge, let it rest for about 30 minutes before beating (with a hand mixer) it again. If it curdles, place the bowl over warm water (not too hot) and keep beating until it gets to the right consistency (creamy, fluffy and spreadable).

Serving suggestions:
Eat without moderation!
Serve those cupcakes with a good cup of tea or coffee or with a glass of ice cold milk!

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~ Cupcakes A La Vanille Et A La Crème Au Beurre ~
Recette pour les cupcakes par Amy Sedaris "I Like You: Hospitality Under The Influence", recette pour la crème au beurre par Dorie Greenspan "Baking From My Home To Yours" et adaptées par Rosa @ Rosa's Yumy Yums.

Pour environ 24 cupcakes.

Ingrédients pour les "Cupcakes":
180g de Beurre non-salé
1 1/2 Tasses (315g) de Sucre cristallisé
2 Oeufs (~63g)
2 CC de d'Extrait de vanille pure
2 1/2 CC de Poudre à lever/cake
1/2 CC de Sel
2 1/2 Tasses (319g) de Farine blanche/fleur
1 1/4 Tasses (300ml) de Lait
Ingrédients pour la "Crème Au Beurre":
1 Tasse (210g) de Sucre cristallisé
4 Gros blancs d'oeufs (oeufs de 63g)
12 Onces (360g) de Beurre non-salé, à température ambiante
1/4 Tasse (60ml) de Jus de citron frais (de 2 citrons)
1 CC d'Extrait de vanille pure ou de pâte de vanille pure
Quelques gouttes d'essence de citron

Method pour les "Cupcakes":
1. Préchauffer le four à 190° C (375° F).
2. Dans un bol moyen, mélanger tous les ingrédients secs. Mettre de côté.
3. Dans un grand bol, battre le beurre en pommade.
4. Ajouter le sucre et battre jusqu'à ce que le mélange devienne blanc et mousseux.
5. Ajouter les oeufs, un à la fois, tout en battant bien après chaque ajout afin d'obtenir un mélange homogène.

6. Ajouter la vanille, puis les ingrédients secs, tout en alternant avec le lait et en mélangeant bien afin d'obtenir une pâte homogène.
7. Mettre la pâte dans les caissettes et remplir seulement au 2/3.
8. Cuire pendant 20 minutes, jusqu'à ce que les cupcakes soient dorés et que la lame d'en couteau en resorte propre.

Méthode pour la "Crème Au Beurre":
9. Mettre le sucre et les blancs d'oeufs dans le bol du mixeur ou un autre bol à l'épreuve de la chaleur et mettre le bol au dessus d'un contenant d'eau frémissante.
10. Battre constamment, en gardant le mélange au dessus de la chaleur jusqu'à ce qu'au toucher, ce soit chaud, environ 3 minute (le sucre doit être dissout et le mélange doit ressembler à de la guimauve fondue).
11. Enlever le bol de la source de chaleur.
12. Avec le fouet du mélangeur ou au batteur électrique, battre la meringue sur vitesse moyenne pour la refroidir, environ 5 minutes.
13. Changer pour la palette du mélangeur et ajouter le beurre un peu à la fois en mélangeant pour rendre lisse.

14. Quand le beurre est incorporé, battre sur vitesse moyenne/forte jusqu'à ce que ce soit épais et très lisse, environ 6-10 minutes (durant ce temps le beurre peut se séparer, continuer à battre et il se replacera).
15. Sur vitesse moyenne, ajouter graduellement le jus de citron en battant bien après chaque addition, puis la vanille et l'essence de citron (vous devriez avoir à ce point un mélange brillant et lisse de crème au beurre).
16. A l'aide d'une poche à douille, décorer les cupcakes avec cette crème au beurre.

Remarques:
J'ai parfumé ma crème au beurre avec de la vanille et de l'essence de citron, mais vous êtes libres d'aromatiser votre crème à beurre selon vos goûts (essences, zestes, épices, etc...) et de remplacer le jus de citron par un autre liquide (même quantité - whisky, jus d'orange, café, etc..).
Vous pouvez garder votre crème au beure au frigo pendant 1 semaine. Dans ce cas, placez un film alimentaire sur la surface de la crème.
Sortez votre crème au beurre du frigo au moins 30 minutes avant toute utilisation, puis battez-la à nouveau. Si elle se sépare, alors placer votre bol dans de l'eau chaude (pas trop) et continuez à battre jusqu'à ce qu'elle ait la bonne consistence (crèmeuse, mousseuse et étalable).

Idées de présentation:
A manger sans modération!
Ces cupcakes sont délicieux lorsqu'ils sont servis avec un bon petit thé, un exquis café au lait, un café séré ou un verre de lait bien froid!

85 comments:

  1. Kudos Rosa!
    Happy birthday to the birthday girl!
    Beautiful cupcakes and drool worthy indeed!

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  2. Je passe mes après-midi avec les ados au CDI du lycée. Cela ne me surprend pas, tes cups ont dû partir en peu de temps. Pour moi, avec un petit expresso sera parfait.

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  3. Those are so beautiful! As much as I love chocolate — I literally have a piece every night after dinner — I am much more of a vanilla girl when it come to cake and icecream and icings. These look so old-fashioned and perfect and delicious.

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  4. This is cute. Lucky you to have been asked to made these beauties. You've giving me ideas. My son will have a 'Grad' Potluck at school and I think I will be baking cupcakes. After seeing yours that gave me inspiration and I'm sure the 17-18 yrs old will appreciate.

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  5. y en a qui ont de la chance ! tu m'en feras pour mon birthday à moi ?

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  6. Happy Birthday Rosa! these cupcakes have the perfect flavor for a great party! YUM!

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  7. oh quel super billet Rosa !! Merci a toi ! c'etait vraiment un succes pour Samira & Co mais tout autant pour moi avec toi ! Tu es une perle !!! On remet ca l'an prochain ?
    Bises
    Corinne

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  8. qu'ils ont l'air bon ces petit cupcakes fourrés...

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  9. These are really dainty cupcakes! I really love looking at them. They are not plain and not over the top at the same time. Perfect balance there!

    And I absolutely love looking at your phots. They are so fresh, I mean your photography style!

    I'm so gonna bookmark your blog from now on!

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  10. Je te trouve vraiment sympa avec tes amis
    bravo pour tes cupcakes vraiment mignon
    euh l'anniversaire de ma fille est en mai !!! LOL

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  11. Iam drooling over. Awesome and yummy cup cakes.

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  12. Tu t'en es sortie avec maestria, tes cupcakes sont magnifiques et n'ont pas fait long feu face à cette bande d'ados affamés.

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  13. i always thought lemon and vanilla are worst enemies...i guess i've been so wrong!

    thanks for the inspiration ^_^

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  14. Je ne me ferais pas prier pour en prendre un. Ils sont jolis comme tout.
    :)

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  15. Tout simples et super jolis !Bravo et en plus j'adore le nouveau look bien plus facile à lire pour moi !!

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  16. Those look So tasty! I like that you didn't spread the buttercream all over the top of the cupcake. I love lemon in baked goods so I'm sure this is amazing!

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  17. J'en prendrais un aussi j'adore la saveur de citron:)
    Très beaux tes cupcakes!

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  18. La bithday girl et ses amis a l'air bien contente...Je crois que tu as fait plaisir à bien du monde.Quelle belle générosité de ta part:)Les cupcakes sont mignons comme tout.
    Bonne journée!

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  19. Superbe ! j'adore le citron et tous les gâteaux au citron ! ;)
    Bonne journée

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  20. ..avec un verre de lait bien froid pour moi s.t.plaît;)

    ~nancy

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  21. Those cupcakes are fabulous! I love vanilla and lemon together! I would definitely have difficulty practicing moderation with these!

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  22. j'adore que tu dises "manger sans modération"!!!
    tes cupcakes sont magnifiques, y a pas de doute.

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  23. They got the teenage stamp of approval? Wow, congratulations ;-) Looks like delicious food and lots of fun!

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  24. These look beautiful I would love to taste one!

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  25. j'étais complétement à coté de la plaque avec les baba mdr en tout cas Bravo jolie travail et je comprends que samira est été ravie c'est pas tous les jours qu'on peut proposer un tel gouté d'anni à ses copains Bises

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  26. un superbe goûter ....savoureux et coloré, le bonheur !!!

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  27. Wow they looks absloutley super delicious.
    I think it is wonderful that your friend asked you to make cup cakes for her daughters biday.

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  28. elle en a de la chance Corinne, et Samira aussi :) Tu ne veux pas venir m'aider a preparer la fete d'anniversaire de mon fils dis? Il a 10 ans aujourd'hui, on fete ca samedi, ca te laisse le temps.
    Joyeux anniversaire a Samira.

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  29. Lovely cupcakes! The perfect party food!

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  30. je savais bien aue ça sentait la fête!!!et quelle façon tu as d'en parler, on les croirait tout droit sortis d'uen rêve!!!bravo pour tout ce travail

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  31. Wow, those look so good! Your friend's daughter is a lucky girl. These are definitely something I could eat "without moderation"!

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  32. Ah ah je savais bien qu'il y aurait du Cupcake là-dessous;) Ils sont adorables (les Cupcakes & les ados :-)

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  33. Those look so beautiful, Rosa! I love the colourful cups, too!

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  34. I want you to cater my birthday party! You can make whatever you want! Actually, you should just come to my birthday party! We can cook and bake together!!!!

    Those cupcakes look wonderful! I love that you didn't put to much icing on them. I am not the biggest icing fan.

    Blessings!
    Lacy

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  35. Thank you for leaving a comment on my blog today. It's nice to "meet" you! You're blog is fabulous!I'll need a whole Sunday just to read it all and catch up!

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  36. la je reconnais la pro des cupcakes ;-) sont juste splendides, un grand bravo! si tu reviens une fois par Fribourg, tu peux m'en faire ;-) biz

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  37. Et bien c'est chez toi que je dois venir pour prendre des cours pour la déco de mes cupcakes, ils sont magnifiques les tiens !!!

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  38. You have almost as much icing as the cupcake and that's a good thing. May i have another?

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  39. My mouth is watering at the mere thought of these beauties! I'm sure they made for a very special birthday party!

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  40. Those look delicious, and I am sure they were; vanilla and lemon are such a great combination.

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  41. Nice job Rosa! They are cute as a button!

    Where is the pic of you at the party!? I want to see if your avatar really looks like you!!

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  42. lucky birthday girl! belated wishes to her.. love the cupcakes:-)

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  43. Rosa, the cupcakes look so fun! I can't wait for the dark choc & PB ones too. Yay!

    Now I'm going to click away randomly to see if I can be informed of your posts - yes, that how much of a tech idiot I am.

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  44. Good job. Love your cupcakes. They look so beautiful and I bet they taste amazing. After this round, I bet you will be doing a lot more from nowonwards. hehe.. As for me, I'm still not used to cooking/baking for a lot of people.

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  45. I would say these are definitely droolworhty as well Rosa!!!!!!!I'm so glad everyine was so appreciative of your time and effort and of course delicious food!!!!

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  46. Tu as vraiment beaucoup de talents!! Ils sont presque trop mignons pour être manger hihi:))

    ~Lexibule~

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  47. joyeux anniversaire Samira
    ben dis donc , c'est un travail de pro que tu as fait là !
    ta copine a bien fait de faire appel à toi , tes cupcakes sont vraiment très réussis

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  48. Ils sont absolument délicieux ces cupcakes. C'est bien volontiers que j'en prendrai un, voir même deux.
    Bisous et bonne fin d'après-midi, Doria

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  49. Those cupcakes look SO good. Lemon ... one of my favourites. I need to get some baking done today ... but it probably won't look as beautiful as your stuff ... but the taste will still be good!

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  50. Happy Birthday to the Birthday girl. The cupcakes look beautiful and I love the lemon buttercream.

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  51. superbes tes cupcakes , à chaque fois je me dit qu'il faut que j'en fasse , après les vacances peut-être ???Les tiens sont hyper mignons

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  52. You know my weakness for cupcakes! These look sooo good. Now I want one!!!

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  53. Happy birthday to the lucky girl. And yes, those look fabulous. I think anything with lemon deserves attention, but these, accolades.

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  54. Your cupcakes are beautiful! I'm a sucker for lemon desserts.

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  55. Great food party! How nice and fun!

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  56. Ils en ont de la chance ces ados, bravo, c'est ravissant!

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  57. Ils sont aussi jolis qu'ils ont l'air bons et ils me donnent une irrésistible envie d'aller tout de suite à la cuisine.

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  58. Des cupcakes originaux et très tentants!. C'est très sympa de faire des petits gâteaux pour les anniversaires des soeurs des copines!

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  59. Ils sont absolument parfaits...!!
    Bises, bonne journée

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  60. What beautiful cupcakes! Yum!

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  61. Sans modération, c'est bien le mot ! Ils sont superbes, ils ont l'air tout doux, hyper moelleux :)

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  62. How wonderful you are to bake for the birthday girl!! They look so good - I can see why they disappeared so quickly!

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  63. De belles photos, de bonnes recettes... miam miam
    Bonne soirée.

    Yann
    http://saveursetcouleurs.over-blog.com

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  64. I like the sound of the lemon and vanilla combo. The cupcakes look great! Look at all of that yummy frosting!

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  65. comment je les adore tes cupcakes !!!!

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  66. LOL! I like best the suggestion to "Eat without moderation." ;-)

    Your cupcakes do look scrumptious.

    Paz

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  67. Adorable cupcakes! I love lemon and vanilla, so simple but just perfect together.

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  68. "eat without moderation"! What a good advice to these gorgeous cupcakes!

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  69. Simple, yet so tasty looking.

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  70. Je tombe en admiration devant les cupcakes, ils sont si beaux et inventifs et les tiens ont l'air délicieux!!

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  71. qu'est ce qu'ils sont beaux tes cupcakes !

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  72. Magnifiques et diablement tentant, avec un petit expresso...le BONHEUR !
    Bises

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  73. Ils sont vraiment beaux dans leur habit coloré. Gourmands et festifs ! Mes ados à moi aussi auraient craqué ! ;)

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  74. ooh i just made a lemon vanilla flan and it was great! I used lemon zest and extract instead of fresh lemon squeeze juice. Next time I'll try it with the juice. your cupcakes look great!

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  75. Je n'ai jamais fait de cupcakes, ta recette et tes photos me donnent envie d'essayer.

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  76. Great story... It's always nerve-wracking to cook for a crowd but you managed to pull it off gracefully.

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  77. vraiment superbes ces cupcakes!! Bravo

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  78. Finally checking in. What a lucky birthday gorl. And the kids seem so polite! I love that. You did excellent.

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  79. Aaah merci de metter les recettes en français (bon je devrais faire un effort pour l'anglais, je sais).
    Tes photos sont vraiment magnifiques, sur tous les posts !!

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  80. Je n'ai encore jamais fait de cupcakes mais là, tu me donnes vraiemnt envie!! Ils sont superbes!! Merci pour la recette en french!
    Bises

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  81. J'ai l'impression d'arriver un peu tard ! en reste t'il quelques uns

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  82. hi
    Rosa
    remember me?
    The cupcakes look sooo wonderful , wish i could have one...
    The cup cake paper too is just awesome we dont get such papers here in India and even if we do they would be too much beyond our reach.

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