Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Coconut Cupcakes with Coconut Buttercream

This Coconut Cupcake recipe is my Mother's absolute favorite cupcake that I make.  This is the cupcake she asked me to make for her 90th Birthday last October.  They are delicious and super easy to make.  Here's the recipe:

Coconut Cupcakes
Makes 24 cupcakes

2 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons unsifted flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups superfine sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature
2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4 cup sour cream (do not use low-fat or nonfat)
1 cup lightly packed sweetened flaked coconut

Directions:  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin tins with 24 paper cupcake liners.

Sift together the flour, baking soda, salt and nutmeg on a sheet of wax or parchment paper.

Place the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer or a hand-held electric mixer; beat on medium speed for 3 minutes. Add half of the sugar and beat for 1 minute; add the remaining sugar and beat for 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.

Add the eggs one at a time, beating on medium speed for 45 seconds each time, then add the vanilla extract. Stop to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.

Reduce the speed to low. Alternately add the sifted mixture in 3 additions and the sour cream in 2 additions, beginning and ending with the sifted mixture. The batter will be smooth and moderately thick. Add the coconut, beating on low until incorporated.

Divide the batter among the cupcake liners, filling them slightly more than half-full. Bake for 18 minutes (start checking at 15 minutes) or until the cupcakes have risen and completely set. A wooden toothpick inserted in the center of a baked cupcake will withdraw with a few moist crumbs attached.

Cool the cupcakes in the pans on wire cooling racks for 15 minutes, then transfer the cupcakes to the wire racks to cool completely.
Coconut Decorators Buttercream

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 cup Crisco shortening (not butter flavored)
2 teaspoons coconut flavoring (I use LorAnn)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Dash of salt
2 lbs. powdered sugar

Place butter and shortening in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat on high for 5 minutes. Do not under beat, use a timer. Reduce mixer speed to low and gradually add powdered sugar. Add coconut flavoring, vanilla and salt. Add more coconut flavoring if it doesn't taste enough like coconut for you.  If frosting becomes to liquid, add more powdered sugar until frosting will hold a peak. Place decorating tip in a pastry bag and fill with frosting. Pipe frosting onto cupcakes and sprinkle with coconut.  

At Christmas time and during the winter months I mold small white chocolate snowflakes and use them to top the cupcakes.  I then call them Coconut Snowball Cupcakes.  You can also use a little paste coloring to tint the frosting any color you would like if you don't want them all white.
These cupcakes are so yummy, I could eat the entire batch.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Oreo Cupcakes

These are really yummy cupcakes.  What could be better than an Oreo Cookie interpreted as a cupcake?  With a surprise Oreo Cookie baked right in the cupcake. The great part is the recipe starts with a cake mix...easy!

Oreo Cupcakes 
Adapted from Cupcakes From The Cupcake Doctor
Makes 22 to 24 cupcakes

30 Oreo cookies
1 package (18.25 ounces) plain white cake mix
1 cup sour cream
1/2 vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Place rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Line 24 cupcake cups with paper liners.  Set the pans aside.

Count out 12 Oreos (I use Double Stuff) and separate the top and bottom wafers.  Make sure each has some of the icing on it.  Place one wafer, icing side up, in the bottom of each paper liner.  Set them aside.  Place the remaining 18 Oreos between sheets of wax paper or in a large, closed zipper-lock bag and crush them by rolling over them with a rolling pin. (Or place them in a Food Processor with a steel blade and chop.)  Set these crumbs aside.

Place the cake mix, sour cream, oil, eggs, and vanilla in a large mixing bowl.  Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds.  Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula.  Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat 1 1/2 minutes more, scraping down the sides again if needed.  Measure out 1 1/2 cups of the crushed Oreos and fold these into the batter until well incorporated.  Set aside the remaining crushed Oreos for decorating the frosting.  Using an ice cream scoop, scoop 1/3 cup batter into each lined cupcake cup, filling it three quarters of the way full. (You will get between 22 and 24 cupcakes, remove the empty liners, if any.)  Place the pans in the oven.

Bake the cupcakes until they are lightly golden and spring back when lightly pressed with your finger, 18 to 20 minutes.  Remove pans from the oven and place them on wire racks to cool for 5-10 minutes. Remove cupcakes from pan and place on a wire rack to continue cooling.  Cool completely before frosting.
Vanilla Decorator Frosting
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup Crisco shortening (do not use butter flavored)
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 tbls whole milk
Dash of salt
2 lbs powdered sugar

Place butter and shortening in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.  Beat on high for 5 minutes.  Do not under beat, use a timer.  Reduce mixer speed to low and gradually add powdered sugar.  Add vanilla and salt.  Add milk a little at a time until desired piping consistency is reached.  If frosting becomes to liquid, add more powdered sugar until frosting will hold a peak. 

Place decorating tip in a pastry bag and fill with frosting.  Pipe frosting onto cupcakes and sprinkle with remaining Oreo crumbs and top with a miniature Oreo cookie.
I know most people are shocked that I would use Crisco in my frosting.  With this cupcake you need the shortening to give the frosting the same flavor as the filling used in Oreo cookies and to give the frosting that pure white color of Oreo filling..

More Red Velvet Cupcakes

My Red Velvet Cupcake recipe is definitely my go to cupcake.  It is always a crowd pleaser and lends itself to all occasions and Holidays.  I have made hundreds of these cupcakes and they come out perfect every time. You can find the recipe on one of my earlier posts along with the Cream Cheese frosting.  Here are some photos:

All dressed up with stars for Christmas dinner
Ready for a Birthday Party
Dressed for everyday 
In their patriotic best for the Fourth of July