When CB announced what this month's ingredient was...I was excited! My head automatically went to these delicious red pears I had that I needed to use..caramel and pear...huh, huh?? Yeah...FAIL. Big, tasteless, miserable fail there...my dogs loved the treat though. So as the deadline approached I approached this month with a little distain..it happens after a fail. It's normal. I'm all about trying to use what I've got. I'm all about trying to keep things simple and uncomplicated b/c that's my favorite way to cook. Also...I bought a couple of cans of coconut milk at the store (on clearance-woot woot!) and I've been wanting to try out a recipe with them. So I was flipping through a new monthly mag and boom...there was a recipe for coconut cupcakes using coconut milk. Bingo. But caramel and coconut? Um...sounded weird to me. But I googled it and it seems to be a fairly popular combo. So..I'm just calling these Coconut Caramel Cupcakes....that's alot shorter than Coconut Cupcakes w/Caramel injection and a Butter cream cheese glaze. The longer one is really what it is....and really ups the appetizing factor.
Coconut Cupcakes (recipe from this month's Womansday magazine)
2 1/4 cups AP flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup sweetened flaked coconut
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) softened butter
1 1/2 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 tsp coconut OR vanilla extract
3/4 cup light coconut milk (NOT cream of coconut)
Heat oven to 350-place liners in cuptin
Whisk flour, baking powder and salt-then mix in coconut
Cream butter and sugar, add eggs one at a time, then add extract.
Put mixer on low and alternate flour mix and coconut milk, starting and ending with the dry mix. Put about 1/4 cup of the batter into the liners and bake 20-23 or until toothpick tests clean.
Allow to cool!
Once cooled-take a jar of Caramel ice cream topping, take the lid off and pop it in the microwave for about 20 seconds to get it nice and loose. Then take a syringe (I had one left over from last time my daughter was sick, I'm sure you could use some sort of piping mech for this too..but this worked for me) and inject the center of your cupcake with a full syringe. I'm guessing my full syringe to have been about a tablespoon of caramelly goodness.
Butter cream cheese glaze-
1/2 stick butter
2 oz cream cheese
approx 1-2 cups powdered sugar
Melt the buter and cream cheese in the microwave. Note...the butter/cheese will make horrible scary popping noises...but it needs to. Mix that together and add enough powdered sugar to get a good drizzle consistency. You want it more drippy-less spreadable..you aren't spreading..you are dunking. Once the cupcakes have fully cooled...and after you have injected them...dunk the tops in the 'glaze'
For the photo shoot I drizzled more caramel on top to accentuate "these have caramel"-but you taste the caramel in the caramel center more than the drizzle on top, so its up to you.
Thoughts on the cupcake?
I was nervous...after my first fail I wanted to bite into this one and be blown away. But I wasn't sure how I'd like the caramel injection. So tenatively I unwrapped a cup, closed my eyes and took a bite. It took me a second to open my eyes again b/c they were rolling around in the back of my head. Holy smokes...VERY good cupcake!
Husband...who doesn't think there should be ANY cupcake flavor other than chocolate...ate 3 of them and during bites kept saying how good they were.
To learn about what Cupcake Hero is about and what I'm gunning to win..go here! As soon as she gets all the entries in and opens voting, I'll post to let you know!