© 2014 mathewguiver

Vanilla cupcakes with raspberry coconut icing (vegan and gluten free)

Valentine’s Day is less than two weeks away. Like I do every year, I’ll be at the massive public pillow fight that takes place at the Justin Herman Plaza here in San Francisco. If you aren’t familiar, believe me when I tell you that the pillow fight is the most incredible thing you can do in Northern California. It starts exactly at 6 PM on February 14th and all you need is a pillow. Though, I usually bring a bandana to cover my mouth.

Inhaling feathers isn’t sexy, and hey, it is Valentine’s Day after all.

So I made a batch of cupcakes this weekend, and my goal was to keep them strictly vegan and gluten free. I’ve been using a lot of quinoa flour in my baking lately, and love the texture is creates when combined with potato starch and rice flour. These cupcakes were definitely no exception. They’re light and fluffy, and have a great vanilla cakey flavor. But they’re not too sweet on their own. I don’t like adding too much sugar, and with a sweet creamy icing the cupcakes don’t actually need much sugar.

Cupcake ingredients:

1/2 c white rice flour
1/2 c quinoa flour
1/4 c tapioca flour
1/4 c millet flour
1/2 c potato starch
1/2 c sugar
1 Tbsp coconut flour
2 tsp xanthan gm
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp kosher salt
3/4 c plus 2 Tbsp sunflower milk
1/4 c olive oil
1/2 c apple sauce
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp vanilla

Icing ingredients:

1/2 c coconut cream
1/2 c powdered sugar
1 Tbsp raspberry juice

Directions:

1. Combine first 11 ingredients in a bowl.

2. Measure out wet ingredients in a separate bowl or measuring cup, mix, then slowly add to dry ingredients.

3. Using a whisk or sturdy fork, rotate your bowl and whip air into your batter for a few minutes.

4. Distribute batter evenly between 12 cups. You could grease the pan, or use cupcake liners. I actually used parchment liners for my cupcakes so they’d have the indentations from the paper cups, but would come out easily.

5. Bake at 350 degrees fahrenheit, 330 convection for about 20 minutes or until the tops have gone golden.

6. Let cool on a rack for at least half an hour.

7. To make your icing, begin by whipping coconut cream with an electric whisk until it starts to thicken. Gradually add powdered sugar, then raspberry juice.

8. Dip cupcakes into icing.

9. Decorate with raspberries and cranberries.

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