Yield: 8 cupcakes
1 ½ cups cake flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
½ cup (1 stick) butter
¾ cup superfine granulated sugar
3 large egg whites
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ cup plus 2 tbsp milk
Pre-heat oven to 350˚F. Line a cupcake pan with eight cupcake liners.
In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Whisk briefly to evenly combine the dry ingredients.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar together on medium speed until the butter is lightened and fluffy, about 3 to 4 minutes.
With the mixer running add the egg whites and vanilla and mix until smooth (this will look curdled at first.)
With the mixer on its lowest speed, slowly add the dry ingredients and the milk. (Add approximately 1/3 of the dry ingredients first, followed by ½ of the milk, repeating those steps until all of the milk and dry ingredients have been added to the bowl. Mix just until barely combined.
Pour into the prepared cupcake pan and bake in the pre-heated oven for 12 to 15 minutes. (A toothpick placed into the middle of a cupcake will come out clean when the cupcakes are done.)
Cool out of the pan on a rack at least 15 minutes before frosting.
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup water
3 egg whites
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
Shredded coconut for decoration
Place the egg whites into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.
Add the sugar and water to a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat.
When the sugar has begun to boil, start the stand mixer, whipping the egg whites on medium high speed until soft peak stage (soft peak stage = the whipped egg whites peak, but the peak slowly curls back on itself.)
When the sugar starts to boil place a candy thermometer into the boiling sugar. When the thermometer reads 238˚F (soft ball stage) turn off the heat. CAREFULLY* transfer the boiling sugar syrup to a heatproof 2 cup glass measuring jug.
With the mixer on medium high speed pour the sugar syrup in a slow stream down the side of the mixing bowl into the egg whites. Continue whipping the egg whites until they are glossy and reach stiff peak stage (stiff peak stage = the egg whites peak and the peak stays in a nice neat point.)
Pipe or spoon the meringue onto the cooled cup cakes. Sprinkle generously with the shredded coconut.
Decorate the tops of the cupcakes with your favorite Easter candy.
*When boiling sugar use extreme caution as it will burn your skin. Do not dip you finger into the sugar.
These cupcakes are discussed in my story, “Not A Peep.”