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We made apple cake, then thought that cupcakes sounded even better. The use of applesauce contributes great moisture to the cupcakes. If you have a surplus of chunky homemade applesauce on hand, use it. Otherwise the store-bought plain or cinnamon applesauce is fine.
We've adapted the cake recipe and added a rich cream cheese frosting. The coconut on top of the cupcakes will help keep the frosting from sticking to the plastic wrap if you pack these in lunches.
3/4 stick (6 tablespoons, 3 ounces) softened unsalted butter
1 cup (7 1/2 ounces) brown sugar, light or dark
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups (6 3/8 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (if you're using plain applesauce) OR 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (if you're using cinnamon-flavored applesauce)
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) applesauce
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with papers and spray the insides, or lightly grease the muffin tin.
Beat the butter and sugar together until light and creamy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition and stopping to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients. Add the dry ingredients to the butter/egg mixture. Stir in applesauce until well blended.
Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin pan. Bake for approximately 25 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into a cupcake comes out clean. Remove the cupcakes from the oven, and cool in the pan on a rack for five minutes. After 5 minutes, remove the cupcakes from the pan and return to the rack to finish cooling completely before frosting. Yield: 12 cupcakes.
Cream Cheese and Coconut Frosting
6 ounces (2 small packages) softened cream cheeseMix the cream cheese, sugar, extract and oil together, beating until smooth. The frosting will be a little thinner than you may be accustomed to, but it needs to be to catch and hold the coconut. Use to frost the tops of the cupcakes. Put the coconut in a bowl. Hold each cupcake upside down and press gently into coconut.
1 1/2 to 2 cups (6 to 8 ounces) confectioners' sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon lemon oil (optional) or 1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1 1/4 cups (3 3/4 ounces) flaked coconut
Nutrition information per serving (1 cupcake, 118 g): 345 cal, 14 g fat, 4 g protein, 16 g complex carbohydrates, 34 g sugar, 2 g dietary fiber, 78 mg cholesterol, 223 mg sodium, 159 mg potassium, 1 mg vitamin C, 2 mg iron, 62 mg calcium, 59 mg phosphorus.
This recipe reprinted from The Baking Sheet Newsletter, Vol. III, No. 8, September-October 1992 issue.