If you, like me, are among the many stateside Royal Enthusiasts, then you have been counting down to tomorrow, the wedding of Prince Harry with Ms. Meghan Markle. I will be anxiously awaiting the coverage which will begin around 4:00 am Central Time leading up to the wedding at Windsor Castle at 6:00 am CT.
In celebration, I will be throwing myself a private viewing party at which I may or may not be wearing my pajamas with a tiara. An American expat, Claire Ptak of Violet Bakery, will be creating a lemon and elderflower cake with buttercream and fresh flowers for the wedding. Ever since the details of the wedding cake were shared (a break in a decades-long tradition of fruitcakes) I wanted to make a miniature version, suitable for breakfast, to go along with the celebration. Adapting recipes from the Violet Bakery Cookbook, I created these breakfast tea cakes in heart-shaped tins, filled with lemon curd, piped with lemon buttercream, and garnished with fresh pansies (an edible flower) to pair with my Harney & Sons Royal Wedding Tea, and perhaps a glass of Pol Roger, the Champagne served at the 2011 nuptials of Prince William and Catherine Middleton.
Once the cakes are cooled, they can be frozen or refrigerated days in advance, then assembled either the day-of, or before serving.
8 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon lemon zest
3 eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract,
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2/3 cup whole milk
2 teaspoons St-Germain liqueur
1. Preheat oven to 350°F and butter your cupcake pans or little tart pans. If you are using individual pans, it is a good idea to place these on a cookie sheet before you place them in the oven.
2. Mix the sugar with the lemon zest in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, then add the butter and mix on medium-high until fluffy and light. Incorporate the eggs, one at a time, vanilla, then salt. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
3. In a separate bowl, sift the flour and baking powder. Add half of the dry mixture to the butter mixture and beat on low until combined. Add the milk and liqueur and beat on low until well combined. Add the remaining flour mixture and beat until no trace of flour remains.
4. Divide the batter, filling your pans two-thirds of the way up, and bake for 12-15 minutes until the edges are golden brown and the center is springy. Allow to cool slightly before transferring to cool the cakes on wire racks.
1 cup lemon curd, store-bought or homemade
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
3 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon St-Germain liqueur, plus more for drizzling
1. When the cakes are cooled, use a melon baller to scoop out the middle of your cake. Transfer your lemon curd to a piping bag fitted with a round tip. Inject 1-2 tablespoons of filling into the center. Optional: Drizzle extra St-Germain onto the cakes at this point for a more decadent, liqueur-soaked cake.
2. In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the butter with half of the powdered sugar. On low speed, add 1 tablespoon of heavy whipping cream at a time and alternate with the remaining powdered sugar until fully incorporated. Add the lemon juice, zest and liqueur and mix until well combined. The consistency should be able to form stiff peaks, but if it is too runny, add more powdered sugar until it is right.
3. Fill a piping bag with your preferred decorative tip and pipe buttercream around the edges of the wedding tea cakes. Garnish with edible flowers and serve.