Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Coconut Grapefruit Cupcakes

Winter can be a dead time for fruit desserts. No juicy pies or sweet cobblers. And while I've been getting pie with pears and apples and even cranberries, sometimes you just crave something lighter, and sweeter and more delicate. Which is why the second I saw this recipe for Coconut Grapefruit Cupcakes, I knew I would be making it soon, despite the remarks from friends and family..."coconut what?" 
It was a sweet victory - converting everyone to my way of thinking, and getting to sink my teeth into the perfect combination of sweet, tart and toasty. It's basically like taking a tropical vacation without leaving home.
I know it's probably sacrilege to admit this around here, but I don't love frosting. Especially with a cupcake as light and fruity as this, weighing it down with gobs of frosting seems wrong. So instead I dipped them in a glaze made from fresh grapefruit juice. It was perfect. 

As I've said before - making any recipe that calls for toasted coconut is worth it for the room deodorizing effects alone. But you'll benefit much more than that with these cupcakes - in fact, I'm dreaming about making them again already. Although I think next time I may swap out some of the milk for grapefruit juice for an extra kick. 

Previously: Coconut Toffee Chew Bars, Chewy Lime Sugar Cookies, Coconut Shortbread Cookies.

Tip of the Day: In any recipe that calls for citrus zest, mix it with the sugar before using, which allows the natural oils and extracts to come out.

Recipe: (inspired by 17 and baking)
Makes about 18 cupcakes

Zest of 2 grapefruits
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut, finely chopped
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) butter or margarine, softened
2 large eggs + 2 large egg whites
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk or soy milk [next time I make these, I would use 1/3 cup grapefruit juice and 5 tbsp milk]

Juice of 1/2 grapefruit
3 to 4 cups powdered sugar

Mix the sugar and grapefruit zest together with your fingers, and set aside.
Spread the coconut on a rimmed baking sheet, and toast at 350 F for 6 to 8 minutes, stirring frequently, until toasted brown.
Beat the butter and sugar and zest together until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and egg whites and beat to combine.
Alternate adding the milk and flour, including the baking powder and salt in the last addition, until all mixed and smooth. Beat in the toasted coconut.
Bake the cupcakes at 350 F for 18 to 20 minutes. Let cool.
Whisk together the grapefruit juice and powdered sugar. Dip the cupcakes in the glaze and let dry.

1 comment:

  1. This sounds like a cupcake that would wake up your tastebuds. They look really good. I have a linky party every Saturday on my blog called "Sweets for a Saturday" and I'd like to invite you to stop by this weekend and link this up.