It’s a twofer type of post with a review and recipe. As many of you know I’m still on the hunt for a new vanilla cupcake. This week I tested Cooks Illustrated Vanilla Cupcake recipe. Along the way I decided to also make a cupcake treat using that base. Let’s start with the cupcake ensemble first.
I adapted the cupcake base with some zest. Then I took the traditional lemon curd and turned it boozy with some limoncello and then stuffed it inside the cupcake. To finish things off I crowned the limoncello cupcake with a tall stacking of coconut buttercream frosting and pressed some sweetened coconut into it for added richness.
If you are a fan of these two flavors you may find this one pretty damntastic. The limoncello adds a nice contast to the tartness in the lemon curd. The coconut flavor gives the lemon a sweet counterpoint. For the coconut frosting, let me say the cream of coconut makes it. Don’t use coconut extract-that stuff taste like sunblock. Ack.
Now for the vanilla cupcake review. I should mention I’m a huge Cooks Illustrated fan, but this recipe, as is-not so much.
Here’s what I did like: Great texture. Nice tight crumb. Dense but not pound cake dense, just dense enough to provide a substantial body to the frosting. I’m personally not a fan of super light crumb textures like those found in box cake mix – too light and airy for me. So here’s the thing that knocks it out of the running for me: flavor. The flavor was too sour cream rich. That’s all I could taste.
So for this cupcake ensemble, I decided to even out the sour cream flavor with some lemon zest and limoncello curd and pair it with coconut. The end result was delicious and I couldn’t taste the sour cream.
Hit the jump over to Endless Simmer for this Limoncello & Coconut Cupcake recipe.
Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar says
These are stunning! You rock my world.
Yes! Where did you find those utensils? So cute.
Another beautifully delicious recipe from you. Where did you get those cupcake liners?
Brian @ A Thought For Food says
Again… pure torture! I’m not even a big cupcake fan, but when I see your creations, I start to salivate.
Averie @ Averie Cooks says
The food styling & photography is just…fantastic!
The blue/teal wood…is that a DIY project or did you find that somewhere? If so, I need to shop where you’re shopping.
And that big lemon blob pouring out from the center…I want to devour that!
Kulsum at JourneyKitchen says
I love the lemon and coconut combination!
Yum yum and yum! And now, if you’ll excuse me….
…..I need to go check out that shop for those pretty spoon! In my eagerness, I pressend enter too soon!!
Mmmmmm… Limoncello! I am so lucky to have a local distillery that makes Limoncello. Such a wonderful addition to cupcakes!
Yummy!! These look so cute and festive!
Paula@Vintage Kitchen Notes says
A very good vanilla cake to try is Absolutely the best Yellow Cake by Carole Walter in her book Great Cakes. I know the name is a bit much but it really IS a great base cake. Cake with lemoncello is worth trying. I love it. I do it myself.
Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen says
That shot of the cupcake split in half with the curd and the frosting!! Oh my!
Mouth is watering!!!