A while back I had a special evening where just Jillian and I spent time together making a fun dessert and working on a craft after Rosetta went to bed. We had such a great time that I've tried to make it a weekly event. With the upcoming Easter holiday, our "date night" has been, of course, themed. Last week we made Easter nest treats and dyed eggs. This week bunny tail lemon cupcakes and pinwheels were on the agenda!
The lemon cupcakes we made were so delicious I actually plan on making them for Jillian's 4th birthday party next month. I try to set all the ingredients out so it's easy for Jillian to pour and stir. (smile) She loves to help me cook and I know it's rewarding when she feels like she made something all by herself.
The recipe called for creating the bunny tails out of cotton candy, which is a fabulous idea, except I didn't have any. That night I tried to come up with something to use and then decided quilt batting would be perfect (although certainly not edible - ha!). This morning we finished the cupcakes by adding the tails.
Recipe listed below... you must try these! The hint of lemon is just perfect for springtime.
While the cupcakes were baking, we made pinwheels. I can't remember the last time I made a pinwheel, so I had to do a little searching for instructions, but it was pretty easy. Fold, punch, cut, clasp.
We really had a fun time making the pinwheels. I had to help Jillian with these but she did all of the cutting herself! The pinwheels aren't perfect but they turned out so cute. We attached dowels to some of them and then created a pinwheel garland with the rest.
We hung the garland in the playroom window. Cheerful springtime decor!
Jillian and I both look forward to spending time together and doing something a little special. It's good for me to take a break from the busyness of life to enjoy some one-on-one time with my precious daughter.
I wanted to share our evening since the cupcake recipe is a keeper and the pinwheels would be so cute for parties, Easter baskets, you name it!
Bunny Tail Lemon Cupcakes Recipe
Recipe from: Pottery Barn Kids
Ingredients - Cupcakes
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- Zest of 1 lemon (about 2 tsp.)
- 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/2 cup milk
- Lemon Buttercream Frosting (See below)
- Additional Decorations
- 12 skewers, 6" each
- 1 bag plain white cotton candy
- Preheat the oven to 350° F. Prepare a cupcake tin with 12 liners.
- Combine the butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar until light in texture, about 2-3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time and beat until incorporated, scraping down the sides if necessary. Add the lemon zest, juice and vanilla, beating one more time to incorporate.
- Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add half the flour mixture and half the milk to the sugar mixture and blend just until combined. Scrape down the sides, then add the remaining flour and milk and mix until the batter comes together uniformly.
- Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake liners, filling each about 3/4 full. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for approximately 20 minutes. Cupcakes should be firm but springy to the touch and slightly golden on top. Allow to cool completely before frosting.
- Frost each cupcake with a generous amount of the buttercream. Place a skewer in the center of each cupcake, then top with a 2-inch piece of cotton candy. Repeat with the remaining cupcakes.
Ingredients - Frosting
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 2 cups confectioner's sugar
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 1 Tb. lemon juice
- 1 Tb. milk, plus more to taste
- 1/4 tsp. vanilla
- Pinch of salt
PreparationYield: 12 cupcakes with about 2 cups of frosting
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, cream the butter on medium speed until light and fluffy, scraping down the sides if necessary. Add 1 cup of the confectioner's sugar, the zest and the lemon juice. Beat on medium speed until combined. Add the additional cup of confectioner's sugar, the milk, the vanilla and a pinch of salt. Beat again until smooth. Taste, adding more confectioner's sugar or a little more milk to reach the desired sweetness and consistency.