by: Jeannie Maristela

I came up with this cupcake recipe out of my pure wicked craving for three sweet things- sweetened flaked coconut, YEMA (a rich, chewy and decadent milk candy made of sweetened condensed milk, egg yolks and flavored with either lime zest or mixed in with nuts such as peanuts, pili nuts or cashews. This confection was introduced in the Philippines by the Spanish during the colonial era and was later modified by the Filipinos incorporating sweetened condensed milk to the original recipe which was basically just egg yolks and sugar-yema) and moist golden cake. It took me a good 30 minutes to conceptualize and formulate the recipe. First, I thought of making a yema-like filling that also incorporates flaked coconut, the result- an egg-less coconut macaroon filling. Second, I want a cake that is spongy yet a bit dense and moist, and what I came up with was a cake batter that is a cross between a spongecake and a pound cake, the result- a buttermilk cake using unbeaten egg whites (means I did not make the egg whites foamy and stiff beforehand). And I have to say, I did a mighty good job with my 30 minutes of pondering. These cupcakes came out exactly the way I anticipated… a small decadent treat with rich, milky, and coconutty filling encased in moist and decently dense golden cake. All I can really say is, you (yes, you!) have to make it to believe it… or me. :)


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serves: 28

Coconut Macaroon

4 cups sweetened flaked coconut

2 cups crushed butter cookies/ shortbread cookies

1 can sweetened condensed milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 zest of lemon

Buttermilk Cake Batter

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup (1 stick) softened unsalted butter

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 cup buttermilk or sour milk*

4 egg whites

(If you can’t find buttermilk, you can add the juice of half a small lemon into evaporated milk to equal 1 cup Let stand for 5 minutes and stir)

Nutrition Facts

Servings Per Recipe: 28

Amount per Serving

Calories: 236

  • Total Fat: 9 g
  •     Saturated Fat: 6.3 g
  •     Trans Fat: 0.1 g
  • Cholesterol: 16.2 mg
  • Sodium: 155.7 mg
  • Total Carbs: 35 g
  •     Dietary Fiber: 1.6 g
  •     Sugars: 24.1 g
  • Protein: 4.5 g

how is this calculated?

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1.  Procedure: Coconut Macaroon

2.  In a food processor, blitz butter cookies until finely crushed.

3.  In a medium-size mixing bowl, combine crushed cookies, sweetened flaked coconut, and lemon zest. Mix well.

4.  Stir vanilla into the condensed milk and pour over the dry ingredients.

5.  Mix well and set aside.

6.  Procedure: Buttermilk Cake Batter

7.  Let egg whites stand at room temperature. Preheat oven to 350’F.

8.  Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

9.  In a large mixing bowl, beat on low speed the butter and sugar, then add the vanilla and buttermilk.

10.  Slowly incorporate the flour mixture into the buttermilk mixture by still beating on low for 1 minute or until well combined, scrape bowl and beat 30 seconds more.

11.  Add egg whites; beat on medium speed for 30 seconds.

12.  Line medium-size muffin tins with cupcake liners.

13.  Using a small ice cream scooper (approx. equivalent to 1 1/2 tablespoons), place a scoop of coconut macaroon mixture onto each cupcake liner until all mixture is scooped out.

14.  Using a medium-size ice cream scooper (approx. equivalent to 2 1/2 tablespoons), top each mound of macaroon with the cake batter.

15.  Bake cupcakes for 20-25 minutes or until toothpick inserted on center comes out clean and tops spring back when lightly touched.

16.  Cool on wire racks.

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