Blueberry Coconut Mini Cupcakes
Blue, blue my world is blue. Blue is my world, my world without you.
Blueberry fields forever.
I can tell you this. I go to the Farmer’s Market. I buy local. I buy seasonal. But, as in life, there are always exceptions that fall, or in this case, roll outside the norm. We’re talking blueberries, little bundles of Blu-Joy. I eat them pretty much year-round.
I start my day with them. On cereal. On cottage cheese. In plain yogurt with a bit of maple syrup or honey and homemade granola.
And I also like to play around with blueberries. In baked French Toast. In muffins, coffee cakes, crisps, crostatas and gallettes. And cupcakes. Do you know I like cupcakes? I do.
Cupcakes sometimes get a bad rap.
Which brings me to my brother-in-law, Bill. He’s got an issue with cupcakes. He doesn’t like them… What, you say? How can anyone NOT like cupcakes? But you know what? He’s got a point. Often, the cupcake has to be sturdy enough to balance a whole lot of frosting on its head. And all the tweaking that needs to be done to achieve that sturdy texture can’t help but sometimes sacrifice natural flavor and lightness. If you have little ones in your life (or big ones) (or maybe you yourself have done this), then you’re aware of the phenomenon of cupcakes tossed aside with much of the frosting eaten off the top. Most of the poor cupcake is still stuck to the paper.
I’m into mini-cupcakes. And I’m also into the flavorings coming from the cupcake itself.
Yes, some may disagree with my not being so into frosting. That’s cool. I don’t like kids grabbing at cupcakes and inhaling the frosting and tossing 7/8ths of the cupcake aside. A cupcake is not a vehicle that conveys frosting to the mouth. A cupcake is not a plate. A plate is a plate. Allow me to share another way. Let’s just throw a little toasted coconut on top and call it a day. We can agree to disagree.
This will turn things around for you. A cupcake where the cake itself is the thing.
And when I say coconut, I mean serious coconut- this isn’t coconut or even double coconut- we’re talking a 1-2-3-4 punch of coconut.
Flaked (shredded) coconut for toasting, finely shredded coconut mixed throughout the batter, coconut oil as the added fat, and coconut milk (light coconut milk has filtered water added to reduce the total fat content), replacing a dairy alternative (yogurt or milk).
Man, we packed these little babies full of coconut flavor. Add to that, a bunch of fresh blueberries stirred into the batter in the final mix of ingredients and you wind up with a thing of joy… a burst of fresh blueberry and coconut.
It yields a cupcake with a very light crumb- so light that I would recommend sitting down with a napkin or little plate holding the cupcake. I’d even consider a little fork.
For your next celebration, instead of a three-layer cake, consider cupcakes or better yet, make mini cupcakes which are about one-third the size. And bypass the whole artery-clogging frosting route altogether. Top with a bit of toasted coconut, toasted nuts, seeds or a little bit of streusel topping.
I used only part of the 13 ½ ounce can of light coconut milk. Once the cupcakes were in the oven, I wanted to see about how much was left and figure out what to do with it. My friend Glenda suggested cooking rice on it. In the moment that I was reaching across the counter for it, I realized it was further away from me than I thought. I saw what was going to happen in the millisecond before. That ever happen to you? Not so bad, my pants, top, sandals, toes got a dose of coconut milk. That’s alright. Coconut is very moisturizing for the skin and I’m sure it is for fabric too (not to mention the wood floor it puddled on). P.S. Had enough left to cook some quinoa with it – had run out of rice.
BLUEBERRY COCONUT MINI CUPCAKES
Ingredients:3/4 c. shredded unsweetened coconut
1 c. all-purpose flour
3/4 c. whole wheat flour plus 1 T. flour
1 1/2 t. baking powder 1/2 t. salt
1/2 c. Baker’s superfine sugar
2 eggs, at room temperature ½ c. virgin coconut oil ¼ c. finely shredded unsweetened coconut
2 t. vanilla extract 3/4 c. light coconut milk 1 c. fresh blueberries, rinsed and gently patted dry
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Toast the large shredded coconut in a medium baking pan. Be sure they are spread out in the pan for even baking. Bake for 3 minutes, until just golden. They will have time to toast more once they’re on the cupcakes. Set aside.
Increase oven temperature to 375°F.
Either grease two 24-cup muffin tins or line them with papers.
In a small bowl, toss blueberries with 1 tablespoon flour.
In a small saucepan, warm the coconut oil until it melts. It should still be on the cool side. Or barely heat the 1/2 cup of oil for a few seconds in the microwave. Another alternative is to place the closed jar of coconut oil in a bowl of very warm water (it won’t effect the rest of the oil in the jar).
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder and salt. In a separate bowl, stand mixer is best, beat the eggs, sugar, coconut oil and vanilla. Stir in the 1/4 cup of finely shredded coconut. Mix half the flour mixture into the wet ingredients. Mix in the coconut milk. Mix the rest of the flour mixture into the batter until just combined. Fold in the blueberries.
Divide batter among prepared muffin cups then sprinkle the tops with toasted coconut.
Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out batter-free, about 15-16 minutes. Transfer muffins to a rack and let cool.
Yield: 48 mini cupcakes
Note: If you are doing regular-sized cupcakes, bake for 18-20 minutes. You should get about 16 cupcakes.
Best eaten that day or the next day. These cupcakes freeze well.
Billy, prepare to be enlightened.
Blueberry production is on the rise. Looks like people are eating a whole lot more blueberries these days. I learned this on my blueberry field trip, courtesy of the Blueberry Council.
These little cupcakes looked so pretty on a table with all manner of sweets at the Food Bloggers LA Cookie Party.
FBLA Cookie and Sweets Love
And here is my gift to you. The complete list of all the links to the fabulous cookies we enjoyed at the FBLA Cookie Party:
FBLA 2013 Cookie Exchange Recipes
- Chai Tea Cookies — Cathy Arkle of She Paused 4 Thought (She also got tired of rolling the dough and refashioned the rest into Baby Hedgehog cookies.)
- Butter Pecan Fudge — Dorothy Reinhold (me!) from Shockingly Delicious.
- Antioxidant Chocolate Bark — Erika Kerekes (our hostess) of In Erika’s Kitchen.
- Sweet Potato Marshmallow Bars with White Chocolate Chips – Jennifer Richmond of Kitchy Cooking.
- Chocolate Chip and Apricot Walnut Rugelach and Vegan Chocolate Mini Cupcakes (“Naughty & Nice Cookies”) — Dana of Foodie Goes Healthy
- Vintage Sponge Drops with Double Fudge Filling — Leslie Macchiarella of Bake This Cake.
- Sicilian Christmas cookies — Judy Lyness of Two Broads Abroad.
- Cranberry Orange Walnut Sugar Cookies — Patricia Rose of Fresh Food in a Flash.
- Brown Butter Praline Chocolate Chip Cookies — Valentina Wein of Cooking On The Weekends.
- Mini Chocolate Nut Sandwich Cookies — Kelly Page of Tasting Page.
- Rosemary Raisin Cocktail Shortbread — Sharon Graves of Cheesy Pennies.
- Saketini Christmas Balls, Chocolate Macarons with Japanese Wine Cream Centers, and Matcha Green Tea Cookies with Chocolate Centers & Espresso Cookies with Caramel Fillings — Kim Watkinson of Ninja Baking.
- Blueberry Coconut Mini Cupcakes, Rainbow Chocolate Bark, and Vegan Gingersnaps — Judy Weintraub of Bumbleberry Breeze.
- Chocolate-Dipped Apricots with Pistachios — Adair Seldon of Lentil Breakdown.
- Spumoni Shortbread — Nancy Rose Eisman of Adventures with Nancy Rose.
- Crispy Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies and Cardamom Gingersnap Cookies — Alison Ashton of Nourish Network .
- Gluten-Free Pumpkin Oat Bars — Alanna Waldron of Eats Real Food.
- Red Velvet Gooey Butter Cookies — Tanaya Ghosh of Tanaya’s Table. (Tanaya’s Table, the blog, will launch in 2014.)
- Black and White Cookies — Tina Kil. (Her blog isn’t up yet, but watch for her contributions in the future!)