1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar, divided
4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature or (9oz of egg)
1/3 cup grated lemon zest (6 to 8 large lemons)
3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, divided
3/4 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
For the glaze
2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted+
3 1/2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼ tsp vanilla
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment cream the butter and 2 cups granulated sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
With the mixer on medium speed, add the eggs, 1 at a time adding the next after each egg is incorporated
add the lemon zest
In a separate bowl sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt
In another bowl, combine ½ cup lemon juice, the buttermilk, and vanilla.
Add the flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately to the mixing bowl, beginning and ending with the flour.
Divide the batter evenly between 12-16 cupcake liners
Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick poked into the center comes out clean
Combine 1/2 cup granulated sugar with 1/2 cup lemon juice in a small saucepan and cook over low heat until the sugar dissolves.
When the cupcakes are done, allow to cool for 10 minutes.
Remove the cakes from the pans and set them on a cooling rack set over a tray or sheet pan
With a wooden skewer or toothpick poke holes into the top of the cakes (the more holes the better)
With a pastry brush soak the lemon syrup over the tops of the cakes allowing time for syrup to absorb into the holes
Combine the confectioners’ sugar, salt, vanilla and the lemon juice in a bowl, mixing with a wire whisk until smooth. If mixture seems to thick to spread, pop in the microwave for about 30 seconds
Pour over the tops of the cakes and allow the glaze to drizzle down the sides.