Sunday, April 15, 2012

Coconut Cupcakes

I will be the first to admit, I didn't like coconut. I pretty much wouldn't eat anything with coconut in it, even flavour. But somewhere along the way, I fell in love with it. Probably sometime after making these for the first time.

Sometimes you just get sick of chocolate (Le Gasp, I know, but that's how I feel!) or regular white cake. You just want something special. And that's where these cupcakes come in. They are light, fluffy, and ever so delicately coconutty.

I found the original recipe here while looking for a way to use up a can of coconut milk about to expire. It really was just a fluke.

I've copy and pasted the recipe below. Only altering the parts that pertain to making cupcakes instead of a full cake. I haven't made any changes to the cake recipe itself. It really is just perfect as is. Darlene A. Schmidt, I applaud you. But I did lazy out on the icing this time around. Instead of the fluffy icing done in a double boiler with egg whites, I whipped up two cups of whipped cream, added the leftover coconut milk from the cake (75 ml) and added a tbsp of coconut extract. Edit: To be clearer, whip cream first, then add both coconut milk and coconut extract. Also forgot to add icing sugar to original instruction. Add sugar to taste.


For the Cake:
6 eggs
1+1/2 cups good-quality coconut milk (not 'lite')
7 Tbsp. sweetened shredded coconut (baking type)
1 cup white granulated sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
1 cup butter OR coconut oil, melted
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 tsp. baking powder
For the Fluffy Coconut Icing:
3 egg whites
1 cup white granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
pinch salt
optional: 2 tsp. coconut extract, OR 1 Tbsp. Coconut Rum
1/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 9-inch cake pans.
  2. Stir the shredded coconut into the coconut milk. Set aside to let soak.
  3. Separate egg whites from yolks. Place the egg whites in a small to medium mixing bowl. Set yolks in a large mixing bowl.
  4. Beat egg whites with an electric mixer until stiff (like whipped cream). Set aside.
  5. To the yolks, add the sugar, salt, and melted butter or coconut oil. Beat to a smooth consistency (1 minute).
  6. Stir the baking powder into the flour, then add this to the yolk mixture. Also add the coconut milk with the shredded coconut. Beat 1-2 minutes, or until well combined.
  7. Fold the beaten egg whites into the batter, OR use your electric mixer on low speed beat - just enough to combine (20 seconds). Pour batter into prepared muffin pans and bake 20 minutes, or until an inserted fork comes out clean. Cool before icing.

To Make the Fluffy Coconut Icing:

  1. Toast the coconut by placing it in a dry frying pan over medium-high heat. Stir continuously until most of the coconut is lightly browned. Immediately transfer to a bowl to cool.
  2. Have ready two pots that can serve as a double-boiler (or use a stainless-steel bowl set over a pot). In the first pot, combine egg whites, sugar, cream of tartar, and salt. Stir well and set aside.
  3. Add 1 inch water to the lower pot and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce heat to low (water should be steaming but not boiling). Now set the pot with the egg mixture tightly over it. Using an electric mixer, beat the mixture starting at low speed. Gradually increase speed over 5 minutes, ending at high speed. Add the flavoring (if using) when you switch to high speed. Beat until icing is stiff and easily holds its shape. Remove from heat.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Pancake Breakfast Cookies

Buttermilk pancakes, bacon, and maple syrup combined in the most perfect eating form, cookie. I love this cookie because it sums up in one bite all the happy and fun that is the Calgary Stampede. I'm also a sucker for sweet and salty and this cookie does that combo perfectly.

I first saw this recipe on the Canadian show Recipe to Riches. When it didn't win the episode, I was so surprised. But it's ok, because it's easy to make. Find the recipe here. The only thing I changed about this recipe is the browning the butter part. I was too worried about burning it, so I just melted it and used it. Turned out perfect still. I found chopping up all that bacon into small pieces a gigantic chore, so this lazy girl went and bought a pound of real crumbled bacon bits. So a package of bacon cooked and crumbled is about 1 - 1 1/2 cups.

And I've copied the recipe here for easy viewing. Please enjoy responsibly.

1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 package bacon (500 g)
2/3 cup packed brown sugar*
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons buttermilk
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt


  1. In small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat; cook, swirling pan often, until tan coloured and fragrant with a nutty aroma, about 2 to 5 minutes. Pour into large bowl and set aside to cool slightly.
  2. Meanwhile, in batches cook bacon over medium heat until crisp, spooning off fat as necessary. Drain on paper towel-lined baking sheet. Chop bacon.
  3. Using wooden spoon, stir sugars, buttermilk, maple syrup and vanilla into cooled butter. In small bowl, beat egg until frothy; beat into butter mixture. In another bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Fold into butter mixture along with bacon, just until combined. Cover and chill dough for 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 375F (190C). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  5. Shape dough by forming heaping tablespoonfuls into balls; place 2 inches (5 cm) apart on prepared baking sheets. Bake one sheet at a time in centre of oven until puffed and set, about 10 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes on baking sheet; transfer to rack to cool completely.

*Note: These cookies are quite sweet. Last time I made these, I reduced the brown sugar by a half and it still tastes plenty sweet.

Also, if you find the cookies hard after reducing sugar, substitute corn syrup for the white sugar and it'll bring them back to their regular softness.

Monday, November 14, 2011