baking, coconut, cupcakes, kids favorite
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Coconut Cupcakes

I love these so much! When I was eight months pregnant with my first son all I was craving were these cupcakes. One weekend I made my husband drive all the way from Manhattan to East Hampton to get them at the “Barefoot Contessa” store! When Ina Garten published the recipe in her first book I was thrilled and I’ve been making them ever since. This recipe makes a lot of cupcakes – great for a party or bake sale, but when I make these for just our family I cut recipe in half (which makes 9 large cupcakes).

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3/4 pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
5 extra-large eggs at room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons pure almond extract
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup buttermilk
14 ounces sweetened, shredded coconut (I don’t use coconut in the batter – only for topping. I tried it both ways and like the texture without better)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, add the eggs, 1 at a time, scraping down the bowl after each addition. Add the vanilla and almond extracts and mix well.

In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In 3 parts, alternately add the dry ingredients and the buttermilk to the batter, beginning and ending with the dry. Mix until just combined. Fold in 7 ounces of coconut – if using.

Line a muffin pan with paper liners. Fill each liner to the top with batter. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes, until the tops are brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Remove to a baking rack and cool completely.

Frosting:

1 pound cream cheese at room temperature
3/4 pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon pure coconut extract
1 1/2 pounds confectioners’ sugar, sifted

Meanwhile, make the frosting. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, on low speed, cream together the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla and almond extracts. Add the confectioners’ sugar and mix until smooth.

Frost the cupcakes and sprinkle with the remaining coconut.

makes 18-20 large cupcakes

based on this recipe from Ina Garten

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