I watched "The Tree of Life" last August but to this day I haven’t been able to write anything about the movie; just couldn’t put into words everything the film made me feel – there were so many tears that my eyes were swollen when I left the theater. Jessica Chastain’s character reminded me so much of my mother it felt like I was going back in time – that was the first movie I saw with the actress and I loved her performance. Not to say I wish I had her hair. :) And last week I read something about her that made me like her even more. :)
A couple of weeks ago I decided to bake something with the tons of coconut stashed in my pantry, so I adapted a recipe from the amazing "Bon Appetit Desserts" and got these tender, delicious cupcakes – then all I did was switch the cream cheese frosting for a chocolate one.
Coconut cupcakes with chocolate frosting
adapted from the always delicious Bon Appetit Desserts: The Cookbook for All Things Sweet and Wonderful
1 cup (140g) all purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
½ cup + 2 tablespoons (124g) granulated sugar
2/3 cup (150g) unsalted butter, room temperature
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1/3 cup (80ml) sour cream*
¼ cup (60ml) coconut milk
1/3 cup (33g) sweetened flaked coconut, plus some extra for decorating
112g (4oz) semisweet chocolate (do not exceed 61% cacao), chopped
56g (2oz) milk chocolate, chopped
2 tablespoons heavy cream
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
½ cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ cup (35g) icing sugar, sifted
Bake the cupcakes: preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Line 10 standard (1/3 cup capacity) muffin cups with paper liners; fill the empty cavities halfway up with water.
In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda.
In the large bowl of an electric mixer beat butter, sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg. Scrape the sides of the bowl eventually. In low speed, beat in half of the dry ingredients, then the sour cream, then the remaining dry ingredients. Beat in the coconut milk and sweetened coconut. Fill each paper liner 2/3 full with batter. Bake for about 18 minutes or until risen and golden and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool the cupcakes in the pan over a wire rack for 10 minutes then carefully remove from the pan. Transfer to the rack and cool completely.
Make the frosting: stir both chocolates, cream and butter in a medium bowl over a saucepan of simmering water until melted and smooth. Remove bowl from the water. Whisk in sour cream and vanilla, then icing sugar. Let stand until thick enough to spread, about 10 minutes (I was in a hurry and after those 10 minutes I refrigerated the frosting for 5 minutes).
Spread frosting on top of completely cooled cupcakes and sprinkle with the extra coconut.
* homemade sour cream: to make 1 cup of sour cream, mix 1 cup (240ml) heavy cream with 2-3 teaspoons lemon juice in a bowl. Whisk until it starts to thicken. Cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature for 1 hour or until thicker (I usually leave mine on the counter overnight – except on very warm nights – and it turns out thick and silky in the following morning, refrigerate for a creamier texture)