Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Coconut Cupcakes

These coconut cupcakes come from the Barefoot Contessa...and are amazing!  Which how much butter they call for, they better be amazing. The original recipe can be found: here

This also makes and amazing cake...or my personal favorite is using this cake batter with the Peach Cream Cheese Frosting recipe found: here!

Cake Batter
3 sticks butter, room temperature
2 c sugar
5 eggs, room temperature
1 ½ tsp vanilla
1 ½ tsp almond extract
3 c flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 c buttermilk
14 ounces coconut
1 pound cream cheese at room temperature
3 sticks butter, room temperature
1 tsp pure vanilla
1/2 tsp almond
1 ½ pounds confectioners' sugar


With electric mixer & paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on high until light and fluffy, about 5 min. With mixer on low, add eggs, one at a time, scraping down after each addition. Add vanilla and almond extract. Mix well.

In separate bowl, sift flower, baking powder, soda, and salt. In 3 parts alternately add the dry ingredients and the buttermilk to the batter, beginning and ending with the dry. Mix until just combined. Fold in 7 ounces of coconut.

Line a muffin pan with paper liners. Fill each liner to the top with batter (I only do ¾ full). Bake for 25 to 35 minutes and 325' F, until the tops are brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Remove to a baking rack and cool completely.

Meanwhile, make the frosting. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, on low speed, cream together the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla and almond extracts. Add the confectioners' sugar and mix until smooth.

Frost the cupcakes and sprinkle with the remaining coconut.

Peach Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Peach Frosting


I found an amazing recipe for these at: Week of Menus
Adapted a few things, since peaches were in season and fell in love with these cupcakes.


1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 ⅔ cups all-purpose flour
2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt 2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs
3/4 c. very finely diced peaches
3/4 cup low-fat buttermilk
1/2 cup pureed fresh peach
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 cup of butter, softened
8 oz of cream cheese, softened
1/3 c. very finely diced peaches
1/3 c pureed peach
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3-5 cups of confectioners sugar


Mix together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. In a large measuring cup or bowl, mix together buttermilk, peach puree and vanilla extract. Set aside until needed.Using an electric mixer, beat butter and granulated sugar in a mixing bowl until pale, about 2 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in peaches.
Mix in flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two batches of buttermilk mixture. Mix until just combined, scraping down bowl as needed. Scoop batter into lined cupcake tins.

Bake at 350' F, until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean, about 21 to 24 minutes. Allow cupcakes to cool in tins for 10 minutes, and then remove cupcakes and place them on a cooling rack. Makes about 24-28 cupcakes.

To make frosting: In a large mixing bowl, mix butter until it is softened and uniform. Add cream cheese and beat together until it is uniform. Add vanilla extract and mix. Add peaches and peach puree and mix. Add 3 cups of sugar to the mixture and mix. Add more sugar if necessary. Mix again until mixture is creamy and spreadable. Add more sugar if necessary.
* I also made this in cake form...which was delicious. 
*Also, using the frosting above and the cake from Coconut Cupcakes found: here
   it made an amazing, cake!

Shellac Nails

After 3 weeks...I didn't even think to take a picture at the beginning.
Excuse my funny shaped toes, but I wanted to show these nails. After 3 weeks, they are flawless.  The only exception being the grow out at my cuticles.

I love nice nails, but I don't love paying for pedicures. Especially on my hands, where nail polish chips with in days or even hours. But after a sweet mother's day gift from my husband, I got to go have a shellac manicure for both my hands and feet. And I have never been as impressed.

 I chose color for my toes, shown above and a french manicure for my hands. They lasted well past the 2 weeks they promised. In fact, I removed my fingers' paint only because they grew out to the point you could see the whites of my own nails coming through. And I wasn't careful with them, I just did things as usual. And things that would cause chipping immediately with normal polish didn't do anything to these.

My toes were able to last longer since they were a color.  I just made sure not to push back my cuticles...postponing the grown out look as long as possible. And, I clipped my nails as they grew, so they weren't too long...and it didn't chip polish.  It kept them looking fresh.

So...in a nutshell, I highly recommend them.
So much, in fact, that I am looking into purchasing the equipment and supplies to do it myself. I'll keep you posted.


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