Last night was time to bake, so that The Kid wasn't the only preschooler without a cupcake in his hand and frosting on his face for Valentine's Day. First I considered making an applesauce cuppy cake, since I'd be able to effortlessly make a nice moist batter without egg while reducing the fat. That seemed a little...boring. Maybe crushed pineapple instead? Much better! With a cherry frosting, so it would taste like a pineapple upside down cake...then I decided to mix in some shredded coconut. As soon as the smell of pineapple and coconut hit my nose I said "It's a Piña Colada Cupcake!"
I'm a sucker for umbrella drinks, and I was sorely tempted to start mixing rum and cream of coconut for the frosting, but I stayed on the straight and narrow. With the help of a brand new book on cake decorating and my mom's old Wilson decorating kit from the 1970's, I even got up the courage to try piping the frosting for the first time!
1 1/2 C cake flour, sifted
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 C dairy free margarine, softened
1 C sugar
1 8 oz can crushed pineapple
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 C sweetened shredded coconut
Preheat oven to 375F. Line a standard muffin tin with 12 paper baking cups. Sift together all dry ingredients into a small bowl. In a separate small bowl, toss together the coconut and several tablespoons of the flour mixture. Set both bowls aside. Cream margarine and sugar together in a large mixer bowl. Continue mixing and add pineapple and vanilla. (Don't worry if you get a cottage cheese texture, just continue beating the mixture until the "curds" are smaller.) Add flour mixture in small portions while still continuing to mix until completely combined. Stir in coconut by hand.
Divide batter evenly into muffin tin. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from oven when a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool completely, then frost.
1/3 C dairy free margarine, softened
3 C powdered sugar, sifted
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbs lemon juice
2 Tbs cherry spreadable fruit or cherry preserves
12 maraschino cherries (optional)
Cream margarine in a mixer bowl, than gradually add sugar while continuing to mix. Once combined, mix in the rest of the ingredients except cherries. (I had planned on adding vanilla soy milk, but the frosting was so tooth achingly sweet, that I switched to lemon juice plus vanilla extract.) Frosts one batch of cupcakes!