Challenge Book #4 - Coconut Lemon Twinkies
I have never eaten a twinkie in my life. I have never even seen one in person. But I have always liked the idea of them. A tube of soft sponge cake with a creamy filling. And they're called twinkies. TWINKIES. What's not to enjoy!!
So when I came across a recipe for coconut lemon twinkies, I could not resist giving it a go.
I found the recipe in this book - The Sweet Spot: Asian Inspired Desserts. And this is Book #4 in the KJ wants a Kitchen Aid Challenge (see here). This is the last book I bought before my self-imposed ban on cook book purchases.
I stumbled onto this book in Oprah magazine. My dalliance with Mr Ong's fruit carpaccio recipe convinced me to buy it. I have bookmarked almost every page, it all sounds soooo good.
I think I'm doing really well with this challenge. I have gotten through one month and four books, with no new purchases whatsoever.
I decided the best idea was just to stay well away from temptation. Last week I was in a bookstore and absentmindedly wandered into the cookbook section. When I realised I reared back, much like a vampire confronted with a crucifix, and hightailed it to the safety of the crime section.
But back to my twinkies, I forwent(?) the lemon filling used in the recipe. Instead I made up some lemon curd (which I also needed for another project) and lightened it with some whipped cream.
Luckily, I have a silicon muffin tin with very deep and narrow cups. I thought that this allowed a much more twinkie like feel than I think you would get from a normal shaped muffin tin.
I was delighted with the end result. The lemon and coconut flavour was delicious. Dusting the cups with sugar provided a lovely sweet crust around the outside of the twinkie.
The only slight disappointment was with the cake. It was incredibly light and airy. But really, the texture was a bit on the tough side. I found leaving them for an hour or two after adding the filling allowed them to soften nicely.
They disappeared in a flash, so I guess that's a bit of a testament to how enjoyable they were.
Coconut Cupcakes *
(Adapted from The Sweet Spot)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup plain flour
1/2 cup dessicated coconut
3 large eggs, separated
1 large egg yolk
1 tbspn grated lemon zest
1/4 tspn salt
1 tspn vanilla extract
Generously grease and sugar a 12 cup muffin tin or preferably a tin with deep narrow cups.
Sift flour and stir in coconut.
Whisk the egg yolks and lemon zest until combined. Add the salt and 2 tbspn and 2 tspns of sugar. Continue whisking until the yolks are pale, thick and doubled in volume. This should take about 10 minutes.
In the meantime, whisk the egg whites until they are frothy. Keep whisking, and gradually add 1/3 cup of the sugar. Continue whisking until medium soft peaks form.
Add the vanilla to the yolk mixture. Stir in one-third of the whipped whites to the yolks to lighten the mixture. Then carefully and gently fold in the remainder of the egg whites. Carefully and gently fold in the flour mixture.
Divide the mixture among the muffin cups. Place in 175C oven. Bake for 4 minutes and then rotate the pan. Cook for a further 5 minutes. Cool the cakes in their tins for around 5 minutes before turning out. Leave until completely cold.
I used curd lightened with whipped cream. Any type of curd would be great - lime, passionfruit, orange or mango. Jam would be another option. The recipe suggests using marmalade topped with whipped cream.
Spoon the filling into a pastry bag fitted with a small round tip. Poke the tip of the piping bag into the cake and slowly pipe in the filling until it begins to squirt out of the opening.
Dust with icing sugar and serve.
* This is an American recipe so 1 tbspn = 3 tspn. An Australian 1 tbspn = 4 tspn.