Coconut Cupcakes

  • For the cupcakes
  • 340g unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 400g granulated sugar
  • 5 extra-large eggs at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp pure almond extract
  • 420g plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 240ml buttermilk
  • 400g sweetened, desiccated coconut
  • For the icing
  • 450g cream cheese at room temperature
  • 340g unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp pure almond extract
  • 675g icing sugar, sifted

Preheat the oven to 160°C/gas mark 3.

1) In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, add the eggs, 1 at a time, scraping down the bowl after each addition. Add the vanilla and almond extracts and mix well.

2) In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking 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 200g of coconut.

3) Line a muffin pan with paper liners. Fill each liner to the top with batter. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes, 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.

4) Meanwhile, make the icing. 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 icing sugar and mix until smooth.

5) Ice the cupcakes and sprinkle with the remaining coconut.

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