Tuesday, January 10, 2006

More baking for the co-workers...

Busy day in the kitchen today as it is Tuesday, the day before Wednesday Treat Day at Jeff's office. I decided to make two recipes as there would be more people than normal there tomorrow and I needed an excuse to use a new display piece I got for Christmas.

The first recipe, Coconut Cupcakes, uses coconut twice - once inside the cake and then on top of the icing. The cupcake itself crowns nicely and has a light texture, with a hint of almond. They are frosted with a soft cream cheese icing and then a showering of coconut covers the top. I was tempted to toast the coconut a little, but I decided I wanted to keep them clean and white. I love the flavor of toasted coconut though, so I might do that next time.

The second, Banana Buttermilk Cupcakes with Chocolate Glaze, has a batter similar to the above, but uses cake flour, no almond extract and of course has mashed bananas. I found that since I filled these a little fuller, the tops spread out and then crowned which allowed some of the sides to touch together. Next time I would reduce the amount in each cup to make 20 cupcakes, instead of 18, to fix that issue. They have a pleasant banana flavor and since the liquid is buttermilk, the cupcakes stay pretty tender. A simple chocolate glaze coats the tops evenly and sticks just enough so it does not drip down and is not heavy. I used bittersweet chocolate, but you could substitute with semisweet if needed.

I loved the combination of flavors going on in tonight's dinner. Jerk Pork Tenderloin with Fresh Pineapple Chutney uses a quick (albeit not too authentic) jerk seasoning that includes spices most people would probably have in their cupboards. It does call for apple-pie spice, but since I did not have that I substituted 2 teaspoons cinnamon, 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg and 1/2 teaspoon cardamom. I then took the needed measure amount from that and will save the rest in case I need it again! After searing the pork, it is baked until slightly pink in the center, so it stays very juicy. The fresh chutney adds a tropical sweetness and refreshing pair to the pork which is just a touch spicy. It was quick to throw together, and I'll get to have the rest of the fresh pineapple for a snack tomorrow!



  1. Those cupcakes remind me of NYC black and white cookies!

  2. They look delicious. I will have to try the coconut ones for my mom. She likes coconut cake.

  3. Mind if I ask you what brand of camera you are using for your photos? My own blog has hit a snag...digital camera took a dive, and I'm looking for a decent replacement. Any suggestions?

    Also, would you mind terribly if I linked your blog from my own?



  4. I so totally want one of that cupcake holder! It's so cool...

  5. My sister would go nuts over your cupcake holder. The jerk pork looks wonderful. I must go to Jamaica and eat jerk chicken from a street vendor. It's one of my culinary/travel goals.

  6. Great way to break in the new holder! I'm sure the office will appreciate this little bit of beauty.

    The jerk tenderloin with the chutney looks awesome!

  7. What a fantastic picture! Joe, you make the best stuff.

  8. Joe, my jaw dropped. How fantastic those cupcakes. You are just amazing.

  9. Mebeth - Too funny, we said the same thing as I was putting them on the stand.

    Michelle - These have a very nice coconut flavor!

    Chris - Our camera is a Kodak DX 4530 - Feel free to link back to us!

    Stephanie - I was quite happy when I got it! I love it!

    Kalyn - That would be a blast to be able to do that!

    s'kat - Thanks! They liked the holder, and the cupcakes went pretty fast!

    Sara - Thank you!

    Valentina - Aww, thank you!

  10. Waaaaaaaaaaaah! Can I PLEASE hire you? Every day there is a new delight on your page (and in YOUR bellies, not mine). Some days the kids I teach suck the lifeforce out of me so bad that I don't have any energy to even glance at the kitchen. The Frog isn't much of hand at the kitchen either. He tried to use a metal utensil in my new teflon pan the other day !!!!! *holding the desk to steady myself*

    So what do you say? I'll even wait for late spring so you can start in on our fresh salmon, halibut the size of a ten-year old child, herring eggs and salmonberries. Maybe even ooligan fish. No doubt you'd create masterpieces with them all :D

    *grin* You always inspire me. Ignore the whining but there IS a fishing resort up here if you're up to it ;) This place is gorgeous to visit in the summertime.

  11. Wow!! Wonderful cupcakes Joe! And the cupcake holder is so beautiful, I want one too!!

  12. I'm eyeing that cupcake holder, Joe. Where can I get one? :)

  13. thediningdica - Hmm... your request does sound tempting!

    Ana - Thanks!

    Lori - I received it as a gift so I'm not sure where it was purchased but I've seen them in local stores as well as Amazon and I believe the Baking Catalog from KAF.