Preheat the oven to 150 degrees C, Fan. Cube 150g of soft butter and add to the stand mixer bowl (or a mixing bowl if using an electric whisk). Next add the caster sugar and use the beater blade attachment, or electric whisk, to cream together the sugar and butter. Mix for a few minutes on the highest setting until the mixture is light and creamy.
Next whisk the three eggs together and whilst the mixer is still on high gradually add the eggs into the mix. Add a spoonful of flour from time to time if it looks like the mixture might split.
Once all the egg is incorporated, removed the bowl from the stand mixer and add the sifted, self raising flour and lemon zest. Use a spatula to fold in gently.
Place muffin cases in the muffin tray and spoon the mixture into each case. Leave plenty of space for the muffins to rise by filling each case halfway.
Next wash and halve the raspberries and carefully push 4 or 5 raspberry halves into the mixture of each muffin.
Place the muffins into the centre of the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until the tops have turned golden brown all over. Remove from the oven and set on a wire rack to cool.
Whilst the muffins are cooling, prepared the buttercream. Clean out your mixer bowl and set back on the stand (alternatively use a bowl and electric whisk). Cube 200g of soft butter and add to the mixer or bowl along with the icing sugar.
Use the beater attachment again (or electric whisk) and start the mixer on a low setting. This gives the icing sugar chance to mix in without covering you in icing dust. Once the icing and butter have started to combine, turn the mixer to high and leave for a few minutes until light and creamy. Add a squeeze of lemon juice and mix again for 2 more minutes. Taste and add more lemon juice if desired.
Transfer the buttercream to a piping bag with star nozzle. Check the muffins are fully cooled then swirl on the buttercream. Serve with any leftover raspberries and with extra lemon zest sprinkled on top.
How to tell if the muffins are baked though? The muffins will be done if they are gold brown on top and appear firm but springy on top. Or an inserted toothpick will come out clean. How to store? Once completely cooled the raspberry muffins (with or without buttercream) can be stored in an air tight container for 3-4 days.What to serve with muffins? If you aren't a fan of buttercream why not try these raspberry muffins with cream, ice cream, mascarpone, yogurt, honey or chocolate sauce.What other ingredients could I add to these muffins? To really boost the flavour of these muffins try adding to or substituting the raspberries or lemon zest with different ingredients. For example: chocolate chips, chocolate spread, poppy seeds, cinnamon, ground nutmeg, chopped nuts or other fruits such as banana, chopped mango, blueberries, dried apricot or glazed cherries.Top tips:
For both the muffins and the buttercream bring your butter to room temperature and make sure it is nice and soft before you begin.
Adding the eggs can cause the muffin mixture to split. Make sure to add the eggs as slowly as you can particularly towards the end. If the mix looks like its split, add a spoonful of the flour to help bring it back together.
Mixing the flour too quickly into the muffin mix will remove the air and reduce the rise during baking. So use a spatula, fold the flour in gently and take your time.
Adding the raspberries to the mixture once its spooned into the cases helps to keep them intact and keeps them juicy and full of flavour. Mixing them in would cause the raspberries to break and the juice to run into the cake mix, so diluting their taste.
Check your muffins are fully cooled before adding the buttercream. If they are still warm the buttercream will melt and run.