It’s half term and the kids are out having fun with Nanny and Grandad. I could go to the gym (unlikely), I could soak in the bath, I could clean the house (I’ve done some laundry – that’s quite enough of that). Instead, knowing that my little monsters will be home later wanting tea and sandwiches I’ve made some coconut cupcakes.
These are quite useful for those with a dairy intolerance as they need no butter, and avoid the cholesterol inducing margarine. If anything, coconut oil actually lowers cholesterol and is full of the good fats that avacardo has (don’t put avacardo in cupcakes).
I make one statement here before comments appear below, I am taking the word dairy at its literal meaning. Dairy is anything that comes out of a breast, be that human or cow. These cakes contain eggs – eggs are ovums from a chicken, not created by breasts, and therefore not dairy in the true sense.
For mine, I choose to stick with cane sugar as the sweetener alternatives are hugely processed and actually send my kids far nuttier than a bit of sugar, and I do a half iced / half plain batch just in case they decide to go for the non-frosted variety (and I despise frosting on cake, unlike my sweet-toothed offspring).
If you’ve not worked with coconut oil before, you substitute the same amount for the butter in a recipe. I like to melt mine first (coconut oil has a higher melting temperature than normal room temp so will be solid when its in the pot unless you’re in a hot climate).
Don’t be tempted to microwave it, remember this is oil, and frankly expensive oil. Put it in the bowl where you intend to make your mixture and put the bowl into hot water. I do this in the sink, but you can be far more posh about it and place it in a saucepan of hot water, or Bain Marie (the sink works just fine).
Now add in the other ingredients. For standard sponge cake you’ll need:
4oz coconut oil
8oz self raising flour
I prefer to add the eggs and sugar and mix in to make a paste, then add the flour. I also add some extra milk (or soya milk / water if dairy free) to make the cake batter smooth. It needs a good stir which can be achieved in a food processor (be that an electric one, or child with a wooden spoon).
Divide the mixture into cupcake cases in an appropriate tin (about a tablespoon in each case) then bake them at 180 deg C for 25ish minutes. Interestingly, when using coconut oil instead of butter, the cakes come out blonde and take a little longer to bake.
The smell that wafts from my kitchen when making these is brilliant. I like coconut as it is, but combine it with cake and knowing that it’s minutely more healthy than the usual cakes makes me a happy bunny.
Now all I have to do is ice them and not eat them before the kids get home…. Maybe just one to make sure though…..