Monday, December 19, 2011

Toasted Coconut-Rum Cupcakes

I was inspired to make these cupcakes by something I saw at the grocery store on sale. This happens all the time; I'll see something that might be great in a cupcake batter, and voila, cupcake inspiration!

The particular item I saw that day was Kraft Toasted Coconut Marshmallows. I know, probably not the healthiest and most natural of products, but I was intrigued by them. I had been wanting to do a piña colada cupcake, so I thought these might be a good start.

I had also purchased Rum extract recently, seeing that it was sometimes included in piña colada cupcake recipes I had searched for online. So tonight when I made these cupcakes, I had a good idea of what I was going for (sans pineapple... I think I might add that in next time, but I didn't feel like taking any extra risks the first time around).

Needless to say, these cupcakes are amazing. They exceeded all of my hopes and dreams for a coconut-inspired cupcake. I want to marry these cupcakes. I will dream about them every night.

Something about the marshmallow baked inside the cupcake, oozing out of the cake in its melty, crispy way, reminds me of a donut or French-toast stick. They seriously have the texture of something deep fried. And the whipped cream cheese frosting sits atop the cupcake like a perfect, fluffy, creamy, yet light, cloud of yumminess.

Here is the recipe:
(adapted from this Rum Sour Cream Pound Cake recipe,166,159167-251203,00.html)

Toasted Coconut-Rum Cupcakes

1/2 Cup (1 Stick) Butter
1/2 Cup Dark Brown Sugar
1 Cup Turbinado (Raw) Sugar
3 Eggs
1 1/2 Cups Flour
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
2 tsp Rum Extract
1/2 Cup Sour Cream
1/2 Cup Plain Greek Yogurt
Kraft Toasted Coconut Marshmallows

Preheat oven to 350 and line your cupcake tin. This recipe made about 20 cupcakes for me. Cream butter and sugars. Add eggs one at a time. Beat well. Add flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Add vanilla and rum extracts. Mix well. Add sour cream and yogurt. Fill cupcake liners a little more than 1/2 full, then put a toasted coconut marshmallow in each cupcake liner (just push them down in the middle of the batter, and its okay that the marshmallow isn't covered up by batter). Cook at 350 degrees for 22-24 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

For the frosting:
(adapted from this Whipped Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe

Coconut Whipped Cream Cheese Frosting:

1 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tsp rum extract
2 tbsp granulated sugar

1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tsp coconut extract

Chill bowl and beaters in the freezer for 15 minutes. In chilled bowl, mix heavy cream with rum extract and granulated sugar. Beat until stiff peaks form; set aside.

In a large bowl beat room temperature cream cheese and butter. Add salt, vanilla, and coconut extract. Mix in powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time.

Beat until smooth, then fold in whipped cream. Should be set-up enough to pipe. Wait until cupcakes are completely cooled before frosting. Top with toasted coconut (I used a toaster oven for this, but a normal oven works. Be sure to check on it! It burns fast!) Store frosted cupcakes in the refrigerator.