feedingFRENZY|August 16, 2012 8:45 am

Scrumptious Summer Cupcakes

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surlatable.com

Recipe from Sweet Summer Cupcakes: A class with Chef Katie Rosenhouse at Sur La Table Cooking Classes.

How Sweet It Is

I have a BFA in Theater, having spent many days of my life pretending to be someone that I’m not.  From flight attendant to garbage man to world class chef, I’ve done it all.  Little did I know that I’d soon be taking on another role, Heidi Brod.

Because she could not make it to the class, at the last minute I got out my cupcake book and prepared for ‘Sweet Summer Cupcakes’ at Sur La Table in Hells Kitchen.  When I arrived, I quickly put on my apron and “Heidi” name tag.  After introducing myself to the group, I soon began to feel comfortable in someone else’s shoes (if only they were a pair of Louboutins instead of flip flops). I talked about my kids and love of baking. My new friends were falling in love with ‘Heidi’.  How could I tell them now?

After laughing, learning and making tons of delicious cupcakes, I realized it didn’t matter who I was.  A name and a title are just that; the personality and life I brought to that name are what mattered.  I left with a handful of recipes to share with my friends and had a handful of stories to accompany the sweet treats.  My favorite one of all included a little rum.

doB tip: Get an OXO Silicone Spatula.  You’ll use it in the recipe and over and over again in your kitchen.

Caribbean Coconut-Banana Chip Cupcakes

Makes: 24 cupcakes

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup plus 1/3 cup unsalted butter, room temperature, divided
1-1/2 cups sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract, divided
3/4 cup unsweetened coconut milk
3/4 cup shredded sweetened coconut, toasted, plus more for decorating
1/2 cup rum, divided
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
3 cups heavy cream, whipped, for garnish
Banana chips, for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and place racks in the upper and lower thirds.  Line 24 muffin cups with paper liners.

In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt until thoroughly combined.  Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat butter on medium speed until fluffy, about 2 to 3 minutes.  Add sugar, about 1/4 cup at a time, beating until combined.  Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.  Beat in the vanilla.

With the mixer running on low speed, add 1/3 flour mixture until just combined, followed by half of the coconut milk.  Repeat process, ending with the flour mixture.  Mix until just combined.  Stop mixer, and fold in toasted coconut and 1/4 cup rum by hand, using a silicone spatula.

Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups, dividing equally, filling the cups no more than 3/4 full.  Use the back of a spoon or offset spatula to smooth the batter.

Transfer pans to preheated oven and bake until the tops of the cupcakes spring back when lightly touched, about 20-22 minutes, rotating and switching the pans between racks halfway through baking.  Remove pans from oven and cool cupcakes in pans for 5 minutes.  Transfer cupcakes to wire racks to cool completely.

To prepare rum caramel topping, place remaining 1/3 cup butter in a small skillet and melt over medium heat.  Add brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg, stirring well to combine.  Cook for 1 to 2 minutes, then remove skillet from hear, and pour in remaining 1/4 cup rum.  Return skillet to medium heat, and if desired, tip pan or use a long match to ignite rum.  When flames subside, stir in remaining 1/2 teaspoon vanilla.  Remove skillet from heat.

To decorate cupcakes, poke a few holes about 1/2 inch down into each one.  Spoon rum caramel topping over each cupcake, letting it seep into the holes. Pipe whipped cream onto cupcakes, and garnish with toasted coconut and banana chips.

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