Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Vegan Lime Avocado Cupcakes with Lime Avocado frosting

Prep time: About 15 min  Cooking time: 20-25 minutes 

Yields about 18 normal-sized cupcakes

I know what you're thinking. Avocado?  Really? (and possibly, Gross!).  I've been trying to experiment with using less dairy and it works amazingly well as a substitute for butter in this cake/cupcake recipe.  The flavor of the avocado is so mild that it disappears completely behind the lime. The cakes were lighter and moister than I could have expected and held up very well day 2, which is odd as vegan baking has the tendency to go dry fast.   

The "Buttercream", which was my spin on Alton Brown's Recipe,  tasted like a lime sorbet. I could eat it all by itself, and may do just that at some point.  The prime difference was that I halved the sugar  because I liked the flavor and didn't want it too sweet.  It came together so fast and was the perfect compliment to the more subtle lime of the cakes.      

For the cupcakes

  • 2 1/2 cup  AP Flour (or a Gluten-free flour of your choice)
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cup Organic Sugar
  • 1 14oz Can of Coconut cream
  • 1/2 cup Avocado (about one small Haas will do it)
  • Juice & finely chopped zest of one lime
  • 3 TBSP Sunflower oil
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
For the frosting
  • 1 Avocado, whipped smooth
  • 2 cups Confections sugar (feel free to add more for thicker frosting) 
  • finely chopped zest & juice of one lime
  • 1/2 lemon extract

Making the cake batter:
Pre-heat the oven to 350°.  Line a 12 cup muffin tin with paper liners and dust with flour.  
Whisk together the dry ingredients (Flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt) in a bowl and set it aside.  
Blend the avocado in a food processor until smooth, then cream to together with the coconut cream, sugar, oil, vanilla, lime juice & zest.    
Gently fold in the the flour mixtures, stirring enough to combine.  At this point the batter will be thick like frosting.   Spoon the batter into the paper liners, about 3/4 full if you can (note, the thick batter makes this tricky, so don't  be alarmed if they're totally full.  

Bake for 22-25 minutes, until the oft-mentioned inserted toothpick comes out clean.  Let the cupcakes cool completely ( at least 3 hours) before frosting.   

Frosting the cupcakes:

Whisk (or use a hand mixer) to blend the avocado, confectioners sugar, lime juice, zest & lemon extract together, adding more sugar to thicken it up if preferred.  As I prepared it, the frosting isn't quite thick enough to be piped, so spread it on with a spatula.  It will have a naturally brilliant green color that suggests the flavor, and the lime juice will keep the avocado from browning.

You can pretty them up with a bit of shredded or toasted coconut, but I liked them as is.    


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