Raspberry-Topped Lemon Cupcakes with Limoncello Glaze

Is it summer yet??? It certainly tastes like it around here with these cupcakes! They are so lemony (is that a word?), and the Limoncello glaze makes them sweet enough to make you wish you had one in your hand right this minute. I made them this morning...such a beautiful morning...since lunch I've been working on work-stuff most of the day...I've been craving another bite of one of these cupcakes since I left the kitchen this morning...I just might have to take a break here and walk right out to that kitchen to get one! Somebody stop me!

Okay...I'm back now...somewhat satiated. Excuse the crumbs on my face...and the Limoncello glaze, too! Back to business: This recipe is from Bon Appetit (June 2006). The published recipe calls for the cupcakes to be topped with a strawberry. But, all the ones that I found were too big...funny how everyone around here is into BIG strawberries...I mean HUGE strawberries.

I was looking for the little tiny ones, like these...at Wholefoods...but they were into the gigundo ones, too. Oh well, I decided to the raspberries instead and I actually like raspberries better than strawberries, anywayz!

Here's the recipe:

Raspberry-Topped Lemon Cupcakes with Limoncello Glaze
Makes 18
2 cups cake flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cups (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temp.
4 large eggs
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup finely grated lemon peel

Glaze and topping:
3/4 cup (or more) powdered sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons limoncello or other lemon liqueur
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1-1/2 teaspoons finely grated lemon peel

18 strawberries or raspberries

For Cupcakes: Preheat over to 350 degrees F. Line 18 standard cupcake pan with liners. Sift flour, baking powder, and salt into medium bowl. Beat sugar and butter in large bowl (I used the BIG KA for this) until fluffy. Beat in eggs 1 at a time. Beat in dry ingredients in 3 additions alternately with buttermilk in 2 additions. Beat in lemon juice and lemon peel. Divide batter among liners.

Bake cupcakes until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 18 minutes. Transfer cupcakes to racks.

Meanwhile, prepare glase and topping: Stir 3/4 cup powdered sugar, butter, limoncello, lemon juice, and grated lemon peel in small saucepan over low heat until butter melts and glaze comes to simmer... (now, don't get scared...this turns out to be pretty easy)...Whisk in additional powdered sugar by tablespoonfuls if glaze is very thin. Spoon 1 teaspoon warm glaze over each warm cupcake. Cool cupcakes completely.

Arrange 1 strawberry on top of each cupcake. Drizzle remaining limoncello glaze over them. Let cupcakes stand until glaze sets, about 2 hours. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and let stand at room temperature.

Now, go get yourself a little taste of summer!