Fruit-Topped Coconut Cupcakes
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and lightly flour or line with paper bake cups twelve 2-1/2-inch muffin cups or six 3-1/2-inch muffin cups; set aside. In a medium bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar, coconut extract, and vanilla. Beat about 2 minutes or until mixture is well mixed, scraping side of bowl frequently. Add eggs; beat until combined. Alternately add flour mixture and coconut milk to egg mixture, beating after each addition until combined. Fold in the shredded coconut.
- Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups, filling each two-thirds full. Bake until a toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean. Allow 18 to 20 minutes for 2-1/2-inch muffin cups or 22 to 24 minutes for 3-1/2-inch muffin cups. Cool cupcakes in muffin cups for 5 minutes. Using a knife, loosen the edges; carefully remove cupcakes. Cool completely on a wire rack.
- Meanwhile, in a heavy small saucepan, combine white chocolate and shortening; heat and stir over low heat until melted and smooth. Remove from heat; transfer to a 6-ounce custard cup or small bowl. Dip one edge of each dried mango or apricot piece into melted white chocolate mixture. Place fruit pieces on waxed paper; let stand until white chocolate is set.
- In a small bowl, toss together the coconut chips, pecans, candied orange peel, and banana chips.
- Frost cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting. Pile coconut chip mixture on the frosted cupcakes. Arrange dipped fruit pieces on cupcakes. Makes 12 small or 6 large cupcakes.
From the Test Kitchen
*Test Kitchen Tip:
Look for raw coconut chips in the produce section of a large supermarket or at a health food store. To toast raw coconut chips, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place coconut chips in an 882-inch baking pan. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly brown, stirring once.
To Bake Ahead:
Prepare as directed through step 3. Place cooled cupcakes in an airtight container; cover. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 1 month. Thaw cakes, if frozen. Continue as directed in step 4.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- In a large bowl, combine cream cheese and butter; beat with an electric mixer on medium to high speed until combined. Beat in vanilla. Gradually add powdered sugar, beating until creamy and smooth.