Saturday, October 15, 2011

if you like Pina Colada Cupcakes

and getting caught in the rain...

I have another great recipe here for you.  You can totally booze it up by injecting rum into it with pipettes (yes, that's exactly the instrumentation I used to do it to the cake version).  But these cupcake versions are tasty as is.  To be completely honest with you, this recipe was very time consuming to make.  There are several components to it, each requiring its own cooking and assembling process.  Save this recipe for a day when you're adventurous.  And the results from all that arduous work will be gratifying.  

Step One: Bake cupcakes.
Step Two: Inject cake with remaining coconut milk (or rum) while it's still hot out of the oven.
Step Three: Cook pineapple curd.
Step Four: Toast coconut flakes.
Step Five: Reduce pineapple juice into a glaze.
Step Six: Whip up some heavy cream.
Step Seven: Core your cupcakes.
Step Eight: Add pineapple curd to center.
Step Nine: Cover with whipped cream.
Step Ten: Sprinkle toasted coconut flakes on top.
Step Eleven: Drizzle on pineapple reduction glaze.
Step Twelve: Eat it.

Coconut Cake 
Recipe Adapted from VietWorldKitchen
Ingredients for 2 9-in cakes OR 12 cupcakes and 2 8-in cakes
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
12 3/4 ounces (3 cups) cake flour, plus more for dusting
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 3/4 cups sugar
3 large eggs, very lightly beaten just to break up the yolks 
1 cup coconut milk (Chaokoh brand preferred), reserve the remaining coconut milk for drizzling
1.5 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract
3/4 cup shredded sweetened coconut

1) Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350F.  Generously grease and flour the pans, shake to distribute, then invert them over your sink, tapping out excess flour. Set aside.
2) Over a piece of wax paper or shallow bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. Put the sugar in a bowl and set aside at your work area.  Crack the eggs into a bowl and very lightly mix with a fork to break the yolks and blend it with the whites. Stir together the coconut milk, almond, and vanilla. Set the eggs and coconut milk near the sugar and flour.
3) Using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment in place, cream the 3/4 cup of butter on medium speed for 30 to 45 seconds, until it’s clinging on the side walls and looks satiny.
4) With the mixer still running at medium, slowly add the sugar to butter; tilt the sugar bowl and it should flow slowly out into the butter. When all the sugar is added, stop the mixer. Use a rubber spatula to scrape down the sides.  Return the mixer to medium and continue creaming the butter and sugar for 4 to 5 minutes more. The mixture will become airy, a super pale yellow, and texturally like frosting.
5) With the mixer still running, add the beaten egg, about 1/5 or 1/6 of it at a time. Let the machine work in the egg before adding the next quantity. Go slow.
6) Turn the mixer off. Add 1/4 of the flour and 1/3 of the coconut milk mixture. Run the machine on low to incorporate.  When the flour and coconut are no longer visible, stop the machine and add another 1/4 of the flour and 1/3 of the coconut milk. Incorporate the ingredients on low speed and add another portion of flour and coconut milk. On the fourth addition, you will only have flour to add. When it has disappeared into the batter, turn off the machine. Finish by mixing the flour in with a rubber spatula to avoid over mixing. The finished batter should be smooth.  Fold in the shredded coconut.
7) Divide the batter equally between the prepared cake pans. Weigh them if you care to be extra careful. Use a rubber spatula in a rotating motion to spread the batter outward from the center to create a raised ridge at the edge of the pan. This technique prevents the center from doming up too much during baking.
8) Bake the cakes for 30 to 35 minutes, until golden on top and the sides have begun to pull away from the pan. Gently press on the surface and the cake should spring back slightly.
9) Cool the cakes on a rack for 5 to 10 minutes.  Drizzle remaining coconut milk over the hot cake.

Pineapple Curd
Recipe Adapted from EatingWell
Ingredients for 1.5 cups
2 large egg yolks
1 6-ounce can pineapple juice, (3/4 cup)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
4 teaspoons tapioca starch

1) Whisk 2 egg yolks, pineapple juice, 1/4 cup sugar and tapioca starch in a small saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly, until thick and beginning to bubble, 3 to 5 minutes. Let cool completely.

Toasted Coconut
Ingredients for 1 cup
1 cup shredded sweetened coconut flakes

1) Toast coconut in a small dry skillet over medium-low heat until golden, stirring often, about 5 minutes.

Pineapple Reduction Glaze
Ingredients for 1/2 cup
1 cup pineapple juice

1) Heat pineapple juice until it reduces to a syrup over medium heat.

Whipped Cream Frosting 
Ingredients generously frosts 12 cupcakes and then some :)
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 tsp unflavored gelatin
1 tbsp hot water
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

1) Dissolve the gelatin in hot water and set aside.
2) Whip the heavy whipping cream in a chilled bowl with a chilled whisk.  Once soft peaks are achieved, add the gelatin mixture.  Add the sugar and vanilla.  Continue beating until the peaks become stiff.    

Assembly of Cupcakes
After the cakes have cooled and have been drizzled with coconut milk (or rum), core the cupcakes.  Remove the center and fill with one teaspoon of pineapple curd.  Cover with fresh whipped cream.  Top with toasted coconut then drizzle on the pineapple reduction glaze.  Serve immediately.  These cupcakes are best consumed the day they are prepared.  


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