Gluten-free cupcakes made with lavender sugar make my 6-year-old little button of a daughter very, very happy. Well, to be fair, just gluten-free cupcakes of any sort would do the … more
Gluten-free cupcakes made with lavender sugar make my 6-year-old little button of a daughter very, very happy. Well, to be fair, just gluten-free cupcakes of any sort would do the trick. As might lavender alone, all purple and nice-smelling. Basically, this is a slam dunk for me with my little one.
Lavender very well may be the stuff of magical fairy princesses. And Spring is coming, folks. Ready or not, here it comes. Except who wouldn’t be ready for Spring?
Let’s get past St. Patty’s Day first, though, shall we? Forgive me for rushing things. I’ve, perhaps, lost my mind.
These lavender flower buds are so lovely, but it kills me to have had to buy them. I simply must plant some lavender. It’s so lovely and smells even better than it looks. I wish I looked as good and smelled as nice.
One thing you might like to know about lavender, though. A little is kind of nice, the right amount is heaven.
Too much lavender … is soap. Try to resist the temptation to add more of it when you make the lavender sugar. Trust me. Or, you know, learn the hard way. Like I did.
I bought the flowers here. You very well may judge me for how much they cost. I have nothing to say in my own defense.
Should I lawyer up?
Here’s the flower buds swimming in milk before they steep in it for the glaze.
This is how thickly pourable the glaze should be. I think maybe we should do a How-To Make Glaze post. It can be trickier than it really has to be unless you know the tricks of the trade. I explain it all in the printable.
- FOR THE CAKE
- 1½ cups (210g) all-purpose gluten-free flour (I use Better Batter)
- ¾ teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if using Better Batter)
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon dried culinary lavender buds
- 8 tablespoons (112g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- ⅔ cup milk (low-fat is fine, nonfat is not)
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 extra-large egg plus 1 extra-large egg white, beaten
- FOR THE GLAZE
- ½ cup milk (low-fat is fine, nonfat is not)
- 1 tablespoon dried culinary lavender buds
- 1½ cups (173g) confectioner’s sugar
- 3 drops blue liquid food coloring (optional)
- 3 drops red liquid food coloring (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. Grease or line a standard 12-cup muffin tin and set it aside.
- First, make the cupcakes. Place the flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl, and whisk to combine well. Set the bowl aside.
- Place the granulated sugar and ½ teaspoon lavender in the bowl of a blender or mini food processor, cover and blend or pulse until the lavender is blended into the sugar. Add the sugar to the bowl of the other dry ingredients, and whisk to combine well. Add the butter, milk, vanilla and eggs, and mixing until well-combined after each addition.
- Fill the prepared muffin cups a little more than halfway with batter, and shake the pan to even out the batter in the cups. Place the tin in the center of the preheated oven, and bake until lightly golden brown around the edges and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean, about 19 minutes total. Rotate once during baking. Remove the tin from the oven and allow to cool at least 10 minutes in the pan. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- While the muffins are cooling, making the glaze. Place the ½ cup milk and 1 tablespoon lavender in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. Continue to simmer until the milk is fragrant with lavender and has reduced by about ¼. Remove the pan from the heat, and pass the milk through a strainer to remove the lavender buds. Set the lavender milk aside.
- In a small bowl, place the confectioner’s sugar. Add 2 tablespoons of the lavender milk, and mix to combine. The liquid will have a bit of a time incorporating into the sugar at first. Keep stirring until the sugar is moist. Add more milk by the tablespoon, stirring in between additions, until a very thick paste has formed. Add the optional blue and red food colorings (to make purple), and stir to combine well and to create a light purple color. The consistency of the icing should be quite thick but slowly pourable (see photo). If necessary, thin the glaze with one tablespoon of milk at a time, stirring well after each addition. Dip the tops of the first cooled cupcake into the glaze, bobbing the top 3 times, and then slowly twisting the cupcake until it is upright. Place on a sheet of parchment paper to set. Repeat with the remaining cupcakes. If desired, sprinkle with a few lavender buds before the glaze is set.
- Allow the cupcakes to set at room temperature. Serve at room temperature.
P.S. If you haven’t yet, please pick up a copy of Gluten-Free on a Shoestring Quick & Easy!