Hello and welcome to Romance Recipes where I am happy to introduce you to a new author and a new recipe! Two of my favorite things! Today I am bringing you author, Lucy Burdette, and her recipe for Lime Cupcakes with Lime Cream Cheese Frosting along with an introduction to her cozy mystery, Murder With Ganache. Please join me in welcoming Lucy and savor her recipe for lime cupcakes as you read about her new book!
Lime Cupcakes with Lime Cream Cheese Frosting @LucyBurdette
Hayley Snow’s best friend Connie requested that she bake these cupcakes for her wedding reception. They are so light and delicious and they freeze beautifully! (As I found out when I had the date wrong for a potluck party and arrived two weeks early…)
Ingredients for Cupcakes:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. baking soda
1 stick butter, softened
2 large eggs
2 and ½ tablespoons fresh lime juice (2-3 limes, depending on size)
1 tablespoon finely grated lime peel
¾ cup buttermilk
To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350. Line a cupcake/muffin pan with paper liners. Sift first four ingredients together in a medium bowl. In another large bowl, beat the butter with a mixer until smooth. Add sugar and beat well. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Beat in the lime juice and lime peel. Add dry ingredients and buttermilk alternately to the butter/sugar/egg mixture in three stages. Divide the batter between twelve cupcake liners. Bake 20-25 minutes. (Mine took 22 minutes—check with a toothpick to see if they are done. And don’t overcook or they will come out dry!) Cool ten minutes and then remove from the pan and cool completely.
1 8 oz. package of cream cheese, softened
1 stick of butter, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon finely grated lime peel (zest of about 2 limes, depending on size)
½ tsp. vanilla
Beat all the ingredients together until soft. Then frost the cupcakes—this is a very generous helping of rich icing. If you like less frosting, you can reduce the amount of cream cheese and butter, or freeze the excess for another use. Refrigerate the frosted cupcakes if not serving immediately, but then serve at room temperature.
MURDER WITH GANACHE is a cozy mystery starring Hayley Snow, a food critic who lives on a houseboat in Key West. In this fourth book in the Key West series, Hayley’s extended family is descending on the island like a category 3 hurricane for her best friend’s wedding. When her stepbrother disappears into the spring break party scene, she must put the baking of cupcakes and other wedding chores on hold in order to search for her brother. The book features Hemingway cats, and cupcakes, and wedding drama, but in the end it’s about finding and embracing family in whatever form they come.
Faster than a speeding Kitchenaid mixer, I scraped the freshly-squeezed lime juice and zested lime peel into the bowl and beat the batter to a creamy pale green. Inside the oven, the first set of cupcakes rose gracefully, releasing their sweet and sour citrus fragrance into the tiny galley of our houseboat.
Then my cell phone bleated: Jim Snow. AKA Dad.
My father isn’t big on phone conversations. I could count on the fingers of one hand the times we’d chatted since my near-arrest for murder last fall.
So when his name flashed on the screen, I set down the whisk, abandoning the “do not answer” policy I’d adopted in order to survive the week leading up to my best friend Connie’s wedding. Something had to be wrong.
“Hi Dad, what’s up?” I asked, trying to sound cheerful, when wary was what I felt.
“Good news, Hayley Catherine Snow!” he said, with the faux heartiness he reserved for business associates. And using my full name, which he reserved for times I’d gotten into trouble. “The whole family’s coming to the wedding.”
The oven timer began to ding. I donned a red silicone mitten, pulled the cupcakes out, and slid them onto the stovetop.
“The whole family,” my father repeated. “Rory’s coming too.”
My fifteen-year-old stepbrother. To be honest, I was already stressed about the upcoming week, visualizing how I might handle the family dynamics between my mother and her new boyfriend, whom I hadn’t met except on Skype, and my father and stepmother. Not to mention juggling a high-strung bride while baking two hundred cupcakes for her wedding reception. Rory had been adorable as a toddler. As a teen? Not so much.
A surly, pimply adolescent boy would not, no way, be an asset.
“I was hoping you could find him a place to sleep,” my dad continued. “Otherwise he’ll end up on the couch in our sitting room.” His voice rolled out ominously like the music from Jaws. I was pretty certain he didn’t care much for Rory in his current iteration either–only he didn’t have the luxury of saying so.
“I don’t think I can, Dad. You guys are arriving today. It’s spring break. The hotels in Key West have been sold out for months. I might be able to get a bead on a bunk in a youth hostel. But between us, I think that’s asking for trouble. You don’t know what kind of roommates he’d get or what they might be in to.”
He cleared his throat. “Might there be room on your houseboat? I know he’d love to have some special time with you.”
“No can do,” I said briskly. Rory and I hadn’t lived together enough to bond quite like sister and brother. After my parents’ divorce, I spent only alternate weekends and Wednesdays with Dad. We’d never shared a room, or a tent, or for that matter, a mother.
“Think Airstream trailer on the high seas. The smallest model. Between me, Miss Gloria, two cats, wedding favors, and hundreds of cupcakes, we don’t have room to spit.” Was I being uncharitable? I looked around at the common spaces of our tiny houseboat, the counters in the galley covered with cupcakes, cupcake batter, zested limes, dirty pots and pans, and Evinrude, my gray tiger cat, eying it all from a stool beside the stove.
My father fell silent, which made me feel awful.
“What about Eric Altman? Didn’t your mother stay in his guest room in January?”
I groaned. How did he even know this? When I moved down to Key West from New Jersey last fall, I’d assured my old friend Eric I would only ask this kind of favor in case of emergency. He’d insisted on hosting mom, because she’d been so kind to him when he was a troubled teen. It wasn’t fair to foist Rory on him.
But then I pictured messy, grumpy Rory camped out on our single couch not five feet from the room where I’d be desperate to sleep. This was definitely an emergency.
At exactly that moment, I heard a burst of excited yapping outside on the dock. A black blur tore across our deck into the living area and through the galley, followed by a barking gray schnauzer. Miss Gloria’s black kitten, Sparky, launched himself up onto the stool beside the stove, chasing Evinrude onto the counter. The slavering dog yipped at the cats who were now safely out of reach. The animal leaped higher, nipping at their paws. They sprinted across the two trays of pale green cupcakes that were waiting for icing, tipping them up perpendicular to the counter. The cupcakes crashed onto the floor and splattered into a million pieces.
“Shoo!” I shrieked.
I waved my arm at the schnauzer, knocking into the bowl of green batter, which rocked and then tilted, dumping its contents down the front of the stove.
“Gotta go right now,” I said to my father. “I’ll ask Eric.”
I hung up the phone and lunged for the cats. Evinrude slipped through my fingers and vanished down the hall after Sparky.
“Et tu, Brute?” I yelled after him.
Buy the book:
Clinical psychologist Lucy Burdette (aka Roberta Isleib) is the author of 12 mysteries, including the latest Key West adventure, MURDER WITH GANACHE. Her books and stories have been short-listed for Agatha, Anthony, and Macavity awards. DEATH WITH ALL THE TRIMMINGS will be on bookshelves December 2.
As a special treat, Lucy is giving away a signed copy of Murder With Ganache so be sure to leave your EMAIL with your comment so Lucy can contact you if you win!
Thank you for joining us for another Romance Recipes! I hope you’ll stop by next week to meet another author, try a new recipe and pick up a new book!