Sunday, May 23, 2010

Sasha's Kitchen: Prettiest Coconut Cupcakes

I made some coconut cupcakes a few weeks ago, and this recipe (a Barefoot Contessa recipe) was just perfect.  I've made coconut cupcakes in the past, but they usually had coconut on top and were flavored with coconut extract.  These were so much better in that they contained actual shredded coconut in the cupcake.  I was very happy with this recipe - these were among the best tasting cupcakes I've ever made and were a treat for my husband's birthday.  I cut the recipe in half, which made 15 cupcakes, so I suggest that you do the same.

These cupcakes are so pretty and really it's all about the frosting and the food coloring.  I used gel food coloring to get the lovely shade of blue, but really they could be any color.  I used a frosting bag to pipe the cupcake frosting and topped it off with a little bit of shredded coconut.

Prettiest Coconut Cupcakes (adapted from Barefoot Contessa)
1 1/2 sticks of butter
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
3/4 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
7 oz shredded coconut (sweetened)

8 oz cream cheese
1 1/2 stick of butter
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
4 cups confectioner's sugar
extra shredded coconut (sweetened for topping the cupcakes)
drop of gel food coloring (I used blue)

Preheat the oven to 325.  First, mix the dry ingredients for the cupcakes in a bowl.  Add the shredded coconut, and set aside.  Beat the butter and sugar in the basin of your mixer on high speed for several minutes (about 5) until light and fluffy. With the mixer on low speed, add the eggs, one at a time.  Mix in the extracts.

Next, alternate between adding the dry ingredients and the buttermilk to the batter, mixing on medium speed for a few minutes until well combined, and there are no lumps.  Fill silicon cupcake molds that are lined with paper or foil liners to the top.  Bake the cupcakes for about 20 to 25 minutes at 325 until the tops are lightly browned and a toothpick comes out clean.

Allow the cupcakes to cool.  Make the frosting by beating the cream cheese, confectioner's sugar and butter at high speed.  Beat in the food coloring.  Pipe the frosting using a frosting bag, and top with some of the shredded coconut.


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