Wednesday, February 8, 2012

.mocha cupcakes topped with coconut buttercream.

when my friend, michelle, asked me to make cupcakes for her daughter's baptism celebration, i was all too happy to do so. i was so happy to do so in fact that i made two varieties. knowing chocolate was a favorite of my friend's, i started searching for a new recipe. she has already had my tried and true chocolate cupcake. thankfully, i stumbled upon a mocha cupcake with coconut buttercream frosting recipe. oh yes.

you're going to want to make these soon. they're really a rich tasting cupcake with a light, yet intricate frosting. start by whisking one egg and 3/4 cups white sugar together.

this recipe calls for coconut milk. how fun is that? i know it isn't something you probably already have in your pantry or fridge, but it is worth getting for these cupcakes. plus, it works well in your coffee or even tea as a little treat. to your whisking bowl, add 3/4 cups coconut milk.

because i'm the luckiest girl in all the kitchen worlds, i then went to my pretty blue mixer to keep the batter going. whether you have a standing mixer or a hand mixer (maybe just your hand), to your egg, sugar and coconut milk, mix in 1/2 cup melted butter and 2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract. mix on medium speed. while we're thinking about it, go ahead and preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

in a separate bowl, sift together 1 and 1/8 cups all purpose flour, 1/4 cup dark cocoa powder, 3 tablespoons instant coffee powder, 1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. don't forget to throw some over your shoulder for good luck.

then again, when you're using dark cocoa powder in a recipe, i don't think you really need much luck. you've already got the good stuff. take your dry ingredients and slowly mix them into your wet ingredients.

now, add in two tablespoons of sour cream. you're welcome to use low fat if you're on a cupcake diet like i am.

the last ingredient, and arguably the most important to some people, is the addition of chocolate chips. fold them into your batter by hand or with your mixer on low.

line your muffin tin with liners and plop rounded scoops into each tin. fill them about 2/3 full. i was able to get 15 cupcakes out of the batter. if you want bigger ones, they'd make a nice dozen.

bake for around 15 minutes. i think my oven has heating super powers; so, i always check my baked goods with a toothpick before the recipe's time is up. these were probably done for me around 13 minutes.

while your cupcakes are baking and then cooling on a wire rack, let's get cracking on that frosting.

cream two sticks of softened butter in your mixer. slowly add in the confectionary sugar. you'll use about 3-4 cups and if you add it too quickly, you'll end up with a powdered puffy rain all over your kitchen counter tops. don't be like me and add it very sloooowwwwly. increase your mixer speed now and add a tablespoon of vanilla extract. at this point, you have a yummy white buttercream. now, let's get (coco)nutty! add 1-2 tablespoons of your coconut milk and 3/4- 1 cup of shredded sweetened coconut.

once your cupcakes are completely cool, feel free to frost away. i used a large opening tip. i don't know all the fancy schmancy names of tips yet. i started in the center and just squeezed until mounds of coconut buttercream sat dreamily on top of each mocha chocolate cupcake.

to make an extra point of prettiness for a little lady's baptism, i decided to girly it up with sweet pink roses. this was my first dip into the fondant pool and i think it is safe to say i'll be back.

the cupcakes tasted sophisticated and simply sweet at the same time. this is one of those recipes i'll be revisiting again in the future. oh, and remember how i mentioned i made two varieties for the celebration? the other is right around the corner...

mocha coconut cupcakes
adapted from how sweet it is
makes 12 cupcakes

1 1/8 cups all purpose flour

1/4 cup dark cocoa powder

3 tablespoons instant coffee powder

1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup white sugar

1 egg

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3/4 cup coconut milk

1/2 cup butter, melted

2 tablespoons sour cream

1/2 cup chocolate or cappuccino chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a bowl, whisk egg and sugar until smooth and no lumps remain. Add milk, butter and vanilla, and mix until combined. Sift dry ingredients together and add to wet mixture. Mix until batter is smooth, then stir in sour cream. Fold in chocolate chips and mix. Line a muffin tin with liners and using a 1/4 cup measure, add batter to each cup. Bake for 15-18 minutes. Let cool completely before frosting.

Coconut Frosting

2 sticks of butter, softened (1 cup)

3 2/3 cups powdered sugar + more if needed

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon of coconut extract (if you don’t have this, no big deal)

1-2 tablespoons of lite coconut milk

1/2 cup shredded, sweetened coconut

1/2 cup shredded coconut, toasted

Cream butter in the bowl of an electric mixture until completely smooth and creamy. With the mixer on low speed, add in powdered sugar slowly. Gradually increase mixer speed and add vanilla and coconut extracts, then beat for 2-3 minutes, scraping down sides and bottom of the bowl. Continue to whip for another 4-5 minutes, continuously scrapping. If frosting is too thick, add coconut milk 1 teaspoon at a time until desired consistency is reached If it’s too thin, add powdered sugar gradually until it thickens. Fold in shredded coconut and mix until just combined. Frost cupcakes, then sprinkle toasted coconut on top.

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