I think the idea that they’re finicky and time consuming and so impractical just made me shy away from them.
Sometimes there are occasions that call for them.
So sometimes, you have to suck it up and make them.
And then sometimes you’re surprised because THEY’RE SO DAMN TASTY THAT YOU’RE PRETTY SURE ITS TASTIER THAN ANY CUPCAKE YOU’VE EVER BOUGHT. Like actually.
Cupcakes (makes 24)
2/3 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup boiling water
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/3 cup vegetable or canola oil
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsps vanilla extract
3/4 tsp salt
2 egg yolks
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup salted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup coconut milk (I use the Ayam brand coconut milk)
1 tsp coconut extract
4 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1 Tbsp powdered sugar
1 1/2 tsps vegetable oil
2 tsps water
Preheat oven to 175C/350F.
In a large heat proof mixing bowl, whisk together cocoa powder and baking soda. Carefully pour in boiling water and whisk until bubbling subsides and mixture is well blended, allow to cool for 5 minutes.
In another large mixing bowl, blend together melted butter, vegetable oil, granulated sugar, vanilla and salt until well combined. Beat hard. The original recipe calls for a hand mixer. I don’t have one.
Stir in eggs and eggs yolks, mixing just until combined after each addition.
Blend in lukewarm cocoa mixture and then blend in heavy cream.
Slowly mix in flour and blend until combined.
Divide batter among 24 paper lined muffin cups and bake in preheated oven until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, about 18 to 20 minutes.
Remove from oven and allow to cool in muffin tins before removing to plate to cool. Cool completely then frost with coconut frosting.
Gently roll each frosted cupcake with coconut topping.
Store in the fridge.
Whip together butter and coconut milk as fast as you can until combined. You’re aiming for it to look pale and fluffy. But you know you’re not a machine (see the I don’t have a hand mixer note above) so do your best.
Blend in coconut extract.
Add in powdered sugar and mix vigorously until blended and fluffy.
Whisk dried coconut and powdered sugar together.
Combine the vegetable oil and water in a small bowl.
Pour the liquid ingredients over the sugared coconut. Whisk to combine.
Let the mixture sit for 10 minutes. Stir the mixture once or twice to turn it over.
*Cupcake recipe adapted from Cooking Classy.
**Coconut topping method taken from Live Strong because I don’t think we get sweetened coconut in Singapore.
***Photography for this blog post is courtesy of Hoi Yee (see more of her work at paper_shins).