In 1972 (Wow, I was only 14 years old!), a song was featured regularly on the radio, Coconut by singer/songwriter Harry Nilsson. I remember being in high school and the question was, “What is this song about!?!”. Oh there were many answers bandied about, from the simplest answer – a stomach ache, to the worst – back alley abortion technique. It was the 70s and what was not strange in those days?
The story behind the song is basically a narrator (the singer) telling the story of a girl with a stomach ache, she calls a doctor that tells her to drink a concoction made of coconut and lime.
It does not work, she calls the doctor again and wakes him up; angry, he tells her to put a whole lime inside a coconut, shake it up and drink it all down. He tells her to call him back in the morning with the results. Sort of like having a hangover and drinking the “hair of the dog that bit ya”.
When I first created the recipe for “Lime in the Coconut Cupcakes”, I had finished watching a rerun of the television series “Bones”. One of the main character’s assistants had been murdered. As his casket was being loaded into a truck, for shipment back to his homeland of England, the FBI psychiatrist, Dr. Sweets, begins to sing the man’s favorite song. Yes, you guessed it, Coconut; a turned down version of a New Orleans funeral procession of sorts. For those who do not know the song, where the heck have you been? It is available on YouTube and even the Muppets did their version of the song on “The Muppet Show”.
It got me to thinking, why not put the lime in the coconut? How would it taste anyway; a weird Pina Colada? I did not go down the drink route to avoid that belly ache; instead I decided to make cupcakes. A dumb downed version of a vanilla cupcake with lime curd mixed in, topped with a ginger frosting and either sweetened or toasted coconut. Num Yummy!!! is all I can say.
So, put the lime in the coconut, try my cupcake recipe, and the only doctor you will be calling is the dietitian.
Lime in the Coconut Cupcakes (with Ginger Frosting)
2 cups sugar
1 cup butter
¾ cup lime curd
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 cups flour
3 tsp. baking powder
¾ cup milk
1 cup shredded, sweetened coconut
1 cup shredded, toasted coconut
¼ cup additional lime curd
Preheat oven to 350F; line muffin tins with cupcake liners.
In a large bowl, cream together sugar and butter until fluffy; beat in one egg at a time, then the lime curd and the vanilla extract.
In another bowl, sift together the flour and baking powder; stir into the creamed mixture. Add the milk and stir until batter is smooth. Use an ice cream scoop to fill the cupcake liners up halfway.
Bake for 20-25 minutes; until toothpick comes out of center cleanly. Remove to wire racks to cool before lightly frosting; put coconut into separate bowls and dip frosted cupcake into one or the other. Spoon a dollop of lime curd into center of each cupcake.
Makes 24-26 cupcakes.
1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
3 ½ cups confectioners’ sugar
1 ½ tsp. fresh ground ginger or 3 tsp dried ground ginger
½ tsp. vanilla extract
2 Tbsp. cold milk
In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar together until fluffy; add in ginger, vanilla extract and milk; continue to beat until smooth and spreadable. Makes 2 cups.