The Perfect Wedding Cupcake: Auntie Em's Coconut Cupcake

Last week, I spent a few days working on some baked goods for a wedding (thankfully, not my own... although since our wedding is going to be so small, I did seriously consider baking the cake myself -- but thank goodness Tom's and other more rational minds prevailed). Originally, the plan was to make (among other things) banana-chocolate chip mini-cupcakes, but I was not altogether pleased with my last effort at making the banana cupcakes and I was relieved when the bride was agreeable to a last-minute cupcake flavor substitution. I was positively thrilled when the bride's mother specifically mentioned coconut, because I love coconut in any form, but I hardly ever make anything with it because the world is full of coconut haters. Plus, I had already purchased some white mini-cupcake liners with gold pattern accents at Little Bitts to use for this project, and I knew that coconut cupcakes would look gorgeous (and very wedding-like) with these liners.

Last year I discovered a terrific coconut cupcake recipe from a Los Angeles Times Culinary SOS Column. The recipe -- from Auntie Em's Kitchen -- yields a tender, moist and lightly sweet cupcake that is chock full of coconut, topped with a lovely cream cheese frosting and even more coconut. As a bonus, the cupcake is absolutely beautiful!

I have to say I was pleased as punch with the way that these mini cupcakes turned out. Absolutely delicious, and so cute that I may try and find a way to incorporate some photos of them in our own wedding thank you note cards (another overdue project on my wedding to-do list... but since our save the date cards were cupcake-themed, I was thinking about using a baked goods theme for our thank you notes as well).

The day after I baked the coconut cupcakes, I had an appointment with my hairstylist Jae. Normally, I bring her some baked goods whenever I have a hair appointment, but I happen to know that she's in the coconut hater camp. When I arrived at the salon, I apologized for being empty handed, but explained that all I had on hand was coconut cupcakes. Jae mentioned that her latest obsession is red velvet cupcakes. I told her that I wished I had known, or I would have brought her some. Of course, then as my highlights were processing, the wheels started turning in my head. I thought about the buttermilk I had leftover in my fridge from making the coconut cupcakes (since I hate wasting buttermilk), and realized that I had a few free hours of time that afternoon before I needed to stop in to see our wedding florist. I calculated that I had plenty of time to go home after my hair appointment, bake and frost some red velvet cupcakes, and bring them back to the salon for Jae before attending to all my other errands for the day. (If you can't tell, I love my hairstylist. I have been seeing her for years, have followed her to four different salons, and, generally speaking, would walk through fire for her.)

Last week I read an article on Slate predicting that the cupcake trend has reached a bubble that is about to burst. No way, no how... At least not in my kitchen!



Cakespy said…
Ooh, this is a good find!! I visited Auntie Em's and got to try their carrot cake and red velvet last year...both were awesome. Bet these ones are just as good...if not better...for a coconut fanatic like me!