Why can’t you just all agree? I took a poll on Twitter and Facebook last night because I couldn’t decide if I wanted to share a savory or sweet recipe with you today. Yes, I’m indecisive. Sometimes. Yes, it’s annoying. Always. I’m glad the dating portion of my life is over.
You guys were alllll over the board! Especially you – yes you – my friends who said to combine savory and sweet! Oh, you’re funny. Cute. Ummm… that wasn’t an option. And here’s a little secret: I hate to break it to you but these pictures sure don’t come out of my kitchen at 9 o’clock at night. I have MUCH more important things to do at that time, like engross myself in reedonkulous reality dating TV shows and eat animal cookies out of the trash.
No, seriously… I’m really kidding. But on Saturday I did make Mr. How Sweet throw away a full 5-pound container of animal crackers that he bought months ago and hasn’t touched. I’m just staring at it while it sticks out of the trash can because really… have you ever tried to stuff a 5-pound plastic rectangle into an oval hole?
Don’t answer that.
So yeah. The only savory + sweet recipe development that happens in my kitchen at 9PM is when I crush a peanut butter filled pretzel into brownie fudge ice cream. And I don’t regret it.
If you haven’t X-ed out your browser by now, then you’re wildly aware that today is SWEET. And pink.
I like pink things.
I like pink things so much that I ate all of the strawberries before taking a picture of them. But those are technically red… soooo yeah. You know what I really like that is pink? Strawberry cake. The good strawberry cake – I’m talking about that southern strawberry cake – the one that you’ve searched high and low for on the internet, the one that is impossible to create from scratch, with no readily from-scratch recipes available, so you end up buying the strawberry jello mix and adding it in the cake because it’s just sooo good. And there is nothing else like it. I know. Trust me. I know.
Well, this isn’t that. I’m not going to claim that these are as delicious as that… because I can’t tell a lie. What they are is fluffy vanilla cake made with fresh strawberries. Good stuff. Fresh. Fruity. Fabulous. And topped with really messy coconut frosting! Double like.
Fresh Strawberry Cupcakes
makes 12 cupcakes
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped strawberries
1-2 tablespoons milk, if needed (I did not need/use this)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Beat butter and sugar together in the bowl of an electric mixer until fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla extract and mix until combined. Add flour, baking powder and salt with the mixer on low speed, then gradually increase speed. Add in chopped strawberries and beat on medium speed until the strawberries break down – about 1-2 minutes. At this point, the strawberries most likely have enough liquid that you don’t need to add any milk to the batter. If you batter seems dry and is not like typical cake batter (see 1st picture above), then add milk 1-2 tablespoons at a time, beating until incorporated.
Pour into cupcake liners, filling 2/3 of the way full, and bake for 20-25 minutes or until cake is set. Let cool, then frost.
Note: I would not suggest using frozen strawberries because of the high water content. If you must, make sure they are completely thawed and as dry as possible. Even the fresh strawberries have a high water content, so if yours seem very wet, blot them with a paper towel. Also, if you can get your hands on some strawberry extract, it would probably be delicious in these. You can also add some food coloring if desired to give it the bright pink look.
2 sticks of butter, softened (1 cup)
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar + more if needed
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon of coconut extract (if you don’t have this, no big deal)
1-2 tablespoons of lite coconut milk
3/4 cup shredded, sweetened coconut
Cream butter in the bowl of an electric mixture until completely smooth and creamy. With the mixer on low speed, add in powdered sugar slowly. Gradually increase mixer speed and add vanilla and coconut extracts, then beat for 2-3 minutes, scraping down sides and bottom of the bowl. If frosting is too thick, add coconut milk 1 teaspoon at a time until desired consistency is reached If it’s too thin, add powdered sugar gradually until it thickens. Fold in shredded coconut and mix until just combined.
I’m wordy today. If you made it this far, I love you.