Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Baking Sunday: Frou Frou Cupcakes

I remember first seeing these frou frou cupcakes at Peyton and Byrne in London. P&B are known for their huge towering swirls of icing but these were something else - the biggest swirl covered with snow white coconut flakes and topped with a raspberry, they definitely lived up to their name. They looked beautiful, uber-glam and over the top and I knew I had to try them. Consisting of a coconut and raspberry sponge, cream cheese icing and that beautiful coconut and fresh raspberry topping, it matches up delicious fresh flavours and textures with a super pretty finish and is one of my favourites to make when I'm feeling a bit girly and want something outrageously lovely. You have to be a pretty big icing fan to enjoy these as you need a relatively high swirl of icing to cover in the coconut flakes however the coconut raspberry sponges are pretty tasty just by themselves. If you don't have raspberries available, 2 tablespoons of jam make a good substitute and still add a nice flavour. 

Raspberry & coconut cupcakes

125g unsalted butter, at room temperature
220g caster sugar
3 eggs
75g plain flour
35g self raising flour
40g desicated coconut
80ml sour cream
150g raspberries


1. Preheat the oven to 180°C or 160°C for fan ovens and line a 12 hole tray with paper cases.
2. Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time on a lower speed. If the mix starts to curdle you can add a little of the flour to correct it.
3. Stir in the flours, coconut and sour cream and ensure all the ingredients are well combined. Carefully fold in the raspberries. 
4. Spoon into the paper cases until two thirds full. Try and make sure there's a few raspberries in each case and smooth the tops.
5. Bake large cupcakes about 30 minutes, small cakes about 20 minutes. Turn cakes onto wire rack to cool.

In the meantime, make the cream cheese icing...

Cream cheese icing

60g unsalted butter, at room temperature
120g cream cheese, at room temperature
2 tsp coconut essence
480g icing sugar
Method: Beat butter, cream cheese and essence in small bowl with electric mixer until light and fluffy, gradually beat in sifted icing sugar. You need a relatively firm consistency for the icing so chill in the fridge whilst waiting for the cakes to cool.

To decorate:

100g flaked coconut (I picked up a large bag fairly cheaply from Real Foods)
Fresh raspberries

Put icing into a piping bag with a large plain or star tip and pipe a large swirl onto each cupcake. Roll or pat the coconut onto the icing and then top with a raspberry or two. Gaze in wonder at how lovely they look! You can also remove the paper case and spread the entire cake in icing and then roll the sides in the flaked coconut and top with raspberries. You'd need to eat this straight away but I'm sure that wouldn't be a problem!


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