So now it appears I’m on a coconut kick!  Once I toasted the flakes for the carrot soup, I decided to try a sweet creation…and with Easter just around the corner…

I was inspired by a vanilla cupcake recipe in the book, “Cooking with Coconut Flour,” by Bruce Fife. I’m always playing with alternative flours and recently discovered an organic coconut flour from Tropical Traditions. Ever heard of it? It’s a gluten free option that is high in fiber and protein. And according to the book, it has many more health benefits.  It is said to regulate blood sugar, protect against diabetes, improve digestion, and aid in weight loss.  “CwCF” contains recipes for primarily baked goods – from quick breads and cookies, to muffins and pie crusts.  It even offers ideas for savory dishes substituting this nutritious flour for all purpose flour, in foods like tamale pie and veggie meat loaf.

Because coconut flour does not contain gluten, eggs are used to a larger degree than in most cake mixes.  Gluten is a protein which has an elastic character and traps air bubbles.  Without it, baked goods become more dense – as seen in this photo.  I had several friends try a batch, and most of them favored the rich quality this recipe contained.  But then I got to wondering – what differentiates a cupcake from a muffin other than the frosting?  Turns out there is quite a conversation about it on other sites.

Wanting to put the full coconut flavor to my cupcake mix, I used coconut oil instead of butter and added coconut flakes to the batter. Then I made a creamy frosting from cashews, and topped the muffins cupcakes with toasted coconut. I also think this would make a wonderful cake, so if you feel the urge, pull out your bundt pan and double the recipe.

Coconut Cupcakes – Makes 8

Coconut flour cannot be substituted 1 for 1 in normal recipes.  Eggs are the binding source here, which might also explain the density.  For the frosting, you could also make one with coconut milk and powdered sugar for another shot of coconut.  Either way, these cupcakes are moist and delicious.

6 TB organic coconut oil, melted
6 pastured eggs
1/2 C agave nectar
1/3 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 C sifted coconut flour (I just use a strainer)
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 TB unsweetened coconut flakes

Blend together oil, eggs, agave, salt and vanilla.  Combine coconut flour and flakes with baking powder and whisk into batter until there are no lumps (but be careful not to overmix.) Pour batter into greased muffin cups and bake at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes.  Cool before frosting.

Cashew Frosting – Makes 1.5 cups
This is a favorite recipe from Cafe Gratitude called “I Am Smooth.” If there’s any extra, add it to your green smoothie🙂

1.5 cups soaked cashews (soak in cold water overnight)
1 TB, plus 2 tsp. lemon juice
3 TB, plus 1 tsp. agave nectar
1/2 C water
2 TB unsweetened coconut flakes, toasted

Rinse soaked cashews and add them with all ingredients to blender.  Begin to pulse slowly, then turn up speed.  You may have to scrape the bottom to keep it from clumping. Add more water if needed. Frost cupcakes and top with coconut flakes.


Comments

Cuckoo for Coconut — 13 Comments

  1. Hi Karen,

    Thanks so much for your comment on my blog–and so glad it led me here! You’re right, we ARE kindred spirits! Your blog is great, and I love all the recipes I’ve seen so far (must check out the archives). And how’s this for similar–I even posted an entry last year called “Cuckoo for Coconut”! Will add you to my blogroll directly. 🙂

    Rickis last blog post..Blog Updates!

  2. Veggie Girl…You’ll love it! Make them for your birthday:)
    Susan – the boys will, too! Don’t forget the coconut flakes. Check the recipe on my website.
    Carrie – ah well, it will be our healthy secret.
    Ricki – thanks so much! Your site is added as well. I also commented on ‘the girls’ page. They are too cute!

  3. Great one! I don’t even care much about cupcakes (tho I’ve been known to scarf one or two), but this recipe with its coconut flour and agave sweetner etc sound too intriguing to pass up. Great writing, too – such fun!

  4. Sounds great! I take it the agave nectar is to replace sugar? If I were to use sugar, how much would I use?
    Also, I have backyard chickens, so I know the eggs are wholesome and free of salmonella. Do the eggs still need to be pasturized?

  5. Yes, agave nectar comes from the same plant that produces tequila (which explains why I love it:)It is waaaay better than refined sugar (everything is) becuz it is a whole food and doesn’t raise your blood sugar as quickly as the white stuff. Your chickens are just the type of source I refer to – homegrown is always best! (P.S. Please share:)

  6. Pingback: Coconut is a Healthy Fat | Cook4Seasons

  7. These look delish! Agave nectar is the best huh!! I’ve recently gone on a coconut oil & flour kick. Love the oil in everything but the flour is proving to be more challenging. I’ve made coco-flour pancakes and muffins so far and all the eggs required made them both so very eggy! Do you know of any other ways to “glutenize” coco-flour recipes to avoid the eggy flavor?

  8. Hi Shannon,
    Thanks for stopping by! I agree with you about the eggy part of baking with coco flour. I’m still experimenting with other leaveners and will let you know.
    Also – I’ve been learning more about agave and its not all good. Bottom line (as always): moderation. Stay tuned…

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