Monday, August 22, 2011

Chocolate Coconut Porter Cupcakes

Thank goodness I am not one of those types of people that just run into the grocery store for exactly what I need and run out. I enjoy going to the grocery store; I like to look around and find new things and ingredients.  If I didn’t do that I would have never found the coconut porter by Maui brewing company. I enjoy beer very much, in fact the other half and I brew our own beer, but I love to try new ones. When I saw the coconut porter I knew I had to try it and I knew I had to bake with it. So you guys get to reap the reward of my fondness of beer and cupcakes.

When I took them out of the oven, I couldn’t believe how perfect they looked. These were the best looking cupcakes I have ever baked. I could smell the chocolate and coconut and a faint smell of the beer. (Maybe it was the one I was drinking, but I still smelled it none the less) I could not wait to get these put together so I could devour one. And boy did I! They are perfectly moist with just right balance of chocolaty and coconuty goodness. The beer just adds richness to the cupcake. The co-workers loved them, and a couple even said they were the best cupcake they have ever had.

Chocolate Coconut Porter Cupcakes 
(Makes 24 cupcakes) 

1(12oz) can Maui coconut porter 
1 stick unsalted butter
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups all purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1 ½ tsp coconut extract 
1 tsp vanilla extract 
2 eggs
1 (8oz) container sour cream 

Preheat oven to 350F and line muffin tin with cupcake liners. 

In a medium saucepan, combine coconut porter and butter and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Then whisk in cocoa powder until smooth and let cool.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda and salt. 

In a large bowl, beat eggs, sour cream, and coconut and vanilla extract until smooth. Add cooled chocolate mixture to the sour cream and eggs and beat until just combined. 

Slowly add dry ingredients and beat briefly on a slow speed, scraping down sides as needed. 

Fill each cupcake paper 3/4 of the way full. Bake until a toothpick comes out clean, about 17-18 minutes  (Mine baked for 17 minutes and came out perfect) 

Remove cupcakes from oven and let cool 10 minutes before removing from pan and placing on wire rack. 

Cool completely before filling.

1 (5.1 oz) box vanilla pudding 
1 (13.5 oz) can coconut milk 
1/4 cup heavy cream 
1 cup flaked coconut 
¼ tsp coconut extract 

Whisk together until thick and creamy. Stir in coconut. Chill until ready to use.

1 cup butter (2 sticks, room temp) 
4 oz unsweetened chocolate
3/4 cup cocoa powder
6 cups confectioners’ sugar, divided
5 fl oz coconut milk 
1 tbsp Maui coconut porter
1 tsp coconut extract 
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
toasted shredded coconut (for garnish, I made about a cup) 

In a small, microwave safe bowl, melt unsweetened chocolate. Heat in 30-45 second intervals, stirring frequently, until mixture is smooth. (I let mine sit on top of the stove, in a glass bowl, on top of a burner, while the oven preheated and in melted perfectly.) Let cool to room temperature. 

Transfer chocolate to a larger bowl. Beat in butter, cocoa powder, confectioners’ sugar, coconut milk, coconut porter, coconut and vanilla extract, and salt, (basically everything else) :) beating until frosting is smooth and fluffy.  

Add more confectioners’ sugar for a thicker frosting if desired.

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