Vanilla sponge fingers dipped in chocolate and then rolled in coconut. The larger ones have a jam center and some have a strawberry icing instead of chocolate. They played a strong part of my lunchbox during school.
My version of these is a coconut cake base, raspberry jam center and chocolate ganache on top. I've made them before using a different coconut cake base. That one involved coconut milk and you can find it here. This was a new recipe. Apparently it is a Womens Weekly classic. The coconut flavour comes from desiccated coconut and coconut essence. Mostly the essence I think. the desiccated coconut adds to the texture.
The recipe calls for a full cake, I found it made 18 cupcakes. The downside to 18 is that I could only half fill a tray. Partially full trays don't bake as evenly as full trays. To fix this I partly fill the empty cups with water. This helps with the even heat distribution. They took around 20-25 minutes in total. I preheated using fan forced and then switched into conventional for the baking. This mean that they rose properly. A final blast in fan forced finished off the colour on the half full tray.
Whilst these babies cooled I started on the ganache. 300g dark chocolate broken into a bowl and 300ml of hot cream poured over. Wait about 5 minutes and give it a stir. Let it cool until thick. I then whipped it a little with the hand blender. This is when I realised that the ratio of chocolate to cream was off if I wanted silky smooth and pipable icing. Next time more cream or less chocolate. Potentially a different type of chocolate too.
The assembly is the messy part. I recommend having a sink of hot soapy water ready to go.
Cut a hole in the top of the cupcake and trim of the excess cake. You need to create a lid as well as leaving room for the jam center.
I mix the jam up a little so that it flows into the hole better then pop the lid back on.
Once they are all done it's time to put the ganache on. Originally the plan was to pipe the ganache on. In the end it was dollop time. Once every cupcake had a suitably large dollop, I used a clean knife to smooth the tops. By then my husband and father in law had finished changing the locks on the front door. Someone broke into the house yesterday. We are missing small things like jewelry, cameras and some booze. The biggest annoyance is dealing with lock changes and a broken window.
So once that was done, husband took over the final step with these puppies. Dipping them in coconut. They've been safely packaged to be taken to a party this evening with my father in law. Some of his friends are celebrating becoming Australian Citizens.
The recipe for the coconut cake base is below. I used about 250g of raspberry jam.
- 125g butter, softened
- ½ teaspoon coconut essence
- 1 cup caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup (40g) desiccated coconut
- 1½ cups self-raising flour
- 250g extra-light sour cream
- ⅓ cup (80ml) milk
Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced). Line 2 cupcake trays with 18 wrappers.
Beat butter, essence and sugar in a small bowl with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time.
Transfer mixture to a large bowl. Stir in half the coconut and half the sifted flour, half the sour cream and half the milk, then add remaining coconut, flour, sour cream and milk; stir until smooth.
Divide evenly into the cup cake tins and bake until cooked when tested. Stand cup cakes in pan for 10 minutes before turning onto wire rack, top-side up, to cool.