I’m in dire need of a holiday this week. But alas, work is crazy, life is crazy…so much going on! So you do what you can everyday; little indulgences along the way. A little bit of baking, a good book and some everyday pampering goes a long way. My current pamper comes straight from my girlfriend who introduced me to her amazing body scrub, Butt Naked, and this has become my new favourite morning ritual. I’ll admit, I’m a bit obsessed.
It’s incredible; vegan, locally made and owned, organic…ticks all the boxes. But most importantly for me; it smells DIVINE. The lemon and coconut scrub is my go-to product now and just transports me to a sunny beach; by the time I’m back to reality I’m all silky smooth, hydrated and smelling sweet.
But I’ve got to say; it makes me hungry. Some times stepping out of the shower to my coffee and toast just doesn’t cut it after my little beach day dream. Today was one of those days and with a whole morning free (A rarity! It’s amazing!) I hit the pantry and whipped up some vegan limoncello and coconut cupcakes.
I will admit I’m a FULL-ON butter and cream (all from sustainable farms of course!) lover but there seems to be a myth going around that vegan baking is somehow sub-par. All anyone needs to do to dispel that is hit up Mr Nice Guys bakery in Melbourne to dispove that. Using them as an inspiration I’ve decided to make up a cupcake that’s decadent and fun; hello limoncello! This recipe makes up an incredible moist coconut cake with a nice citrus hit, limoncello lemon curd and vegan-buttercream icing. YUM.
- 1 3/4 cups plain flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon white or apple cider vinegar
- rind of 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups shredded coconut (divided)
Limoncello lemon curd
- 1 14-ounce (414 ml) can coconut cream
- 1/3 cup caster sugar
- 2 Tbsp (~4 g) lemon zest
- 1/2 cup (120 ml) lemon juice
- 2 Tbsp (14 g) arrowroot starch or corn starch
- 4 tablespoons limoncello (or more to taste if you like a boozey hit)Vegan coconut buttercream
- 1 cup vegan margarine (Nuttalex is my preferred)
- 3 cups icing sugar
- 3 tablespoons coconut creamMETHOD
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, rind, salt, and 1/2 cup of the coconut. In a separate bowl, whisk together coconut milk, oil, vanilla, and vinegar.
Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and whisk until just combined, being careful not to over-mix. Pour into prepared cupcake liners and bake until a toothpick comes out clean, 15-18 minutes. Cool completely.
Next, place sugar and lemon zest and juice in a small saucepan and whisk to combine over a medium heat and whisk until sugar is dissolved. Add lemon juice and arrowroot (or corn) starch to a small mixing bowl and whisk to thoroughly dissolve. Then add to coconut cream mixture and stir. Lastly, add limoncello and whisk again until well combined.
Add your mixing bowl ingredients to your saucepan and whisk over a medium heat. Once it starts bubbling and getting thick, reduce heat to medium-low and continue cooking until a visible ribbon forms when spooning a bit of the curd across the top. It should be thick and kind of jiggly in texture. During this process switch to a rubber spatula for stirring to ensure the curd isn’t sticking to the bottom or sides of the pan.Remove from heat and taste and adjust seasonings as needed, adding more lemon zest for acidity/brightness. Cool completely and pop into the fridge for 3-4 hours to set.
Take your completely cooled cupcakes and cut a small circle into the top of the cupcake. Using a cupcake scoop (or small measuring spoon will suffice) remove a scoop from the middle of the cupcake and discard. Neatly fill this void with the cooled lemon curd; this will give a beautiful citrus surprise into the cupcake when you bit into it!
For the ‘buttercream’, carefully mix your margarine, icing sugar and coconut cream with an electric mixer until smooth and fluffy. If you are feeling a little fancy spoon into a piping bag and use a star shaped noozle to pipe onto your cupcakes, completely concealing your lemon curd. If you are feeling rustic, feel free to dollop directly onto the cupcake and smooth with a flat bladed knife. Top with the remainder of your shredded coconut, lemon slices and a few sprigs of mint if you wish.