Tuesday, April 5, 2011

bridal shower cupcakes

I've got a prettier, updated version of this recipe, if you're interested.

My friend Joy got married a couple of weeks ago and her shower was the day before the wedding (since all of us were scattered across a few states, this was the easiest time). The bride's sister, and matron of honor, made reservations at Spice Market in the meatpacking district (at my suggestion) for lunch (photos and review to follow in a later post) and we decided to kick up the festivities with a few decorations and cupcakes.

My immediate idea was to choose white, pristine, perfect cupcakes and that thought blended with my love of coconut pushed me to do a coconut cupcake with marshmallow icing.

CAKE RECIPE (yields 24 to 30 cupcakes)
2-3/4 cups flour (all-purpose is recommended)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon + 1 pinch of salt
1-1/4 cup sugar
2 sticks of unsalted butter (at room temperature)
16 oz. can of sweetened cream of coconut
4 large eggs, separated
1-1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk

Oven temperature: 350F
Cooking vessels: 3 bowls, two cupcake tins with cupcake liners (we bought festive pink ones with white polka dots)
  1. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon of salt in a bowl and whisk together to combine.
  2. Using an electric mixer (either handheld of standing), beat the sugar, butter, and cream of coconut together in a separate bowl until light and fluffy.
    butter, sugar, and cream of coconut
  3. Add the egg yolks and vanilla extract to the butter/sugar/coconut mixture until well mixed.
  4. Add the dry ingredients and then the buttermilk into the batter slowly, just until the ingredients are blended. The more beating, the less tender the cake will be.
  5. In another bowl (v. clean and dry) whip the egg whites with clean beaters. Everything must be clean, otherwise the egg whites won't whip up nice and fluffy. The whites should be stiff but not dry.
    beating some egg whites
  6. Fold the whipped egg whites into the batter.
    folding egg whites into the batter
  7. Fill cupcake tins with liners and add batter (a little more than 3/4 full).
    unbaked cupcakes
  8. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes until slightly golden (and do the toothpick test - insert toothpick and make sure it comes out clean).
  9. Cool on racks before frosting
yum!

FROSTING RECIPE (yields 2 to 3 hefty cups of frosting)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 egg white
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract


Cooking vessels: small saucepan, large bowl
  1. Heat the sugar, water, and cream of tartar in a small saucepan and cook until the sugar is completely dissolved and the mixture is slightly bubbly.
  2. Whip the egg whites in a clean bowl (with clean beaters) until it forms soft peaks.
    simple sugar mixture in the measuring cup on top
    starting to beat egg whites in the bowl
  3. Add the sugar mixture slowly while beating constantly until the frosting is stiff, fluffy, and marshmallow-like.
  4. Add the almond extract and beat until combined.
fluffy marshmallow frosting!

Frost the cupcakes and sprinkle with shredded coconut for added decoration.
finished product in a foil lined box
Enjoy! :)


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