Last week we celebrated the feast of St. Joseph, one of my absolute favorite Saints. There have been so many times that I have prayed novenas to St. Joseph and always, I am given reassurance and answers through his help in those prayers. He is also my husband’s patron saint so between all those times St. Joe has helped me out + to celebrate my husband I thought it was only appropriate to bake up a sweet treat in honor of the day.
In New Orleans St. Joseph altars are apparently huge thing (but not surprising since I feel like any excuse to celebrate down there is welcomed with open arms;). I was seeing friends post about them on the feast day and so I did a little research on my own and found out some pretty interesting information. They are a Sicilian tradition and are a grand presentation of food and thanksgiving to St. Joseph for answered prayers and devotion. Lemons are frequently found on these altars, and it is believed that a woman who steals a lemon from a St. Joseph altar will get a husband.
Well I am a sucker for traditions and anything hopelessly romantic. So inspired by the lovely lemons, I decided to make some (super easy!) lemon cupcakes. I am calling them ‘rustic’ because they are a little rough around the edges and I did a quick/not piped icing job on them.
Recipe: Rustic Lemon Cupcakes
Ingredients for cupcakes:
- 1/2 a box of Trader Joe’s Vanilla Cake + Baking Mix
- 1 large egg
- 1/4c + 2 tbsp cold milk (I used whole)
- juice of 1 whole lemon
- zest of 1 whole lemon rind
Ingredients for flour buttercream frosting:
- 1c milk
- 1c granulated sugar
- 1c unsalted butter
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- 1tsp lemon juice
- 1tbsp lemon zest
- 4.5 tbsp all purpose flour
1) Instructions for cupcakes:
- In a stand mixer combine egg + milk + lemon juice + lemon zest and beat until well combined. Slowly add in cake mix until smooth consistency. Pour into a greased (or lined) muffin tin until each cup is about 3/4 full and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. (I checked on them at 20 minutes and they needed a bit more time – just keep and eye on them.) Remove from oven and let completely cool before icing.
2) Instruction for flour buttercream frosting:
- Combine flour, milk and sugar. Whisk over low heat until the ingredients come to a boil. (You will need to continuously whisk until it comes to a boil to avoid lumps, clumps and over heating your milk)
- Turn off heat and continue to whisk while warm for about 1-2 minutes.
- Transfer to a large mixing bowl/stand mixer and continue to beat until cooled to room temp.
- Add butter one tbsp at a time until eat tbsp is completely combined into your liquid, then add the vanilla.
- Add lemon juice and then fold in your lemon zest.
- Frost cooled cupcakes immediately + enjoy.