Tomorrow is the last day of school for my 7th grader! Can’t believe it really… the ending of this year means that we’ve been in Germany for 2 1/2 years! WOW! I can’t believe that either! Time sure does fly! With the end of the school year comes great big THANK YOUS from me to the school and office staff of the middle school… and of course, in typical JavaCupcake fashion… they get cupcakes!
Last week, I was on vacation in Berlin and was able to visit several farmers and flea markets on Saturday. At one of the booths, I found an older women who made her own jam. Jam is one of my most favorite things to buy homemade… it’s just so much better when it’s made with home grown berries. I spotted my favorite…. raspberry! YES! But OMG, this raspberry was made with vanilla beans as well… MINE! DONE! YES! I bought a jar to bring home.
But, ever since I bought the jar, I couldn’t help but daydream about the flavor combination of vanilla bean and raspberry and how perfect it would be in a cupcake! So today, I’m making Raspberry Vanilla Bean Coconut Cream Cupcakes to bring to the middle school tomorrow.
These cupcakes started with a Martha Stewart recipe… but I kicked it up a few notches. I typically haven’t had good success with MS recipes… but, a reader mentioned they had good success with it… so I thought I’d give it a try. I didn’t over mix the raspberries in the batter so the cupcakes have a nice swirl of pink and white cake together and big chunks of raspberry running through it.
Oh… and don’t forget the frosting. It’s not just any old coconut frosting… I made the coconut milk for the frosting from scratch. Yah…. you read that right. From scratch! And it’s steeped with vanilla beans too. Oh em gee! So good and so perfect with the raspberry cupcakes!
One last thing before I get to the recipe… the first two pans of cupcakes I made, I baked at 350 F degrees and they shrunk down after they cooled… so I kicked up the oven and baked them hotter and for a shorter time. This seemed to help keep their domed shape and prevent shrinkage! So… depending on how your oven cooks… you may want to try 350 for 17-18 minutes or 375 for 15-16 minutes.
PS… Don’t you just LOVE these cupcake liners? Make sure to visit Sweets & Treats Boutique to order some for yourself!
- 2½ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups cake flour
- 2¼ tsp baking powder
- 1¼ tsp salt
- 1¼ cups whole milk
- 2 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup + 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
- the seeds of 2 vanilla beans
- 2¼ cups sugar
- 6 large eggs
- 5 cups fresh or frozen (brought to room temperature) raspberries + 2 Tbsp sugar, divided
- 400ml heavy cream
- 2 vanilla beans
- ½ cup sweetened coconut flakes
- 1½ cups unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3lbs powdered sugar
- 3 tsp coconut extract
- 1½ tsp vanilla extract
- ¾ cup coconut cream
- ¼ tsp salt
- sweetened coconut flakes (garnish)
- fresh raspberries (garnish)
- Preheat oven to 375 F degrees. Line cupcake pans with liners.
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Slowly pour in the sugar and beat together until incorporated. Add the vanilla bean seeds and beat on high for 4-5 minutes or until light and fluffy.
- While the butter is mixing, sift together the flours, baking powder and salt together… twice!
- Add the eggs, one at a time, to the butter and sugar and beat on medium speed after each addition until incorporated.
- Combine the milk and vanilla extract in a measuring cup.
- With the mixer on medium-low speed, add the flour to the creamed mixture in three parts… between each addition, add half the milk. Mix only until JUST COMBINED.
- Toss all the raspberries in 2 Tbsp sugar. Remove 1 cup of the berries and set aside. Gently mash the remaining 4 cups of raspberries until they have broken down. Fold the whole berries back into the mash.
- Fold the raspberries into the batter. DO NOT OVER MIX. You want the pink batter to be swirled through the white batter so you can see both colors.
- Scoop batter into the cupcake liners at least ¾ full. Bake for 15-16 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- Allow to cool in pans for 3-5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Place the coconut flakes in a medium glass bowl.
- Split the vanilla bean pods and scrape the seeds out.
- Place the vanilla bean seeds & pods along with the heavy cream in a medium sauce pan and whisk together.
- Over medium high heat, bring the cream to a slow boil. Once the cream begins to bubble up the sides of the pan, pour it over the coconut flakes.
- Allow the coconut to steep in the cream until it comes to room temperature.
- Once cool, strain out the coconut flakes and bean pods.
- If using immediately, you can leave it on the counter. If you’re using it later, keep cool in the fridge.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter until smooth.
- Add half the powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
- Mix in half the cream, the vanilla and coconut extract and the salt. Beat until incorporated.
- Add the remaining powdered sugar and beat until smooth.
- Finally, add the rest of the heavy cream. Beat on high for 3-4 minutes or until light and fluffy.
- Using a large open star tip, pipe a swirl of frosting onto each cupcake.
- Garnish each with fresh coconut flakes and a raspberry.