from Babycakes by Erin McKenna

1 3/4 c garbanzo-fava bean flour
1/2 c potato starch
1 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 c arrowroot
1 tbsp plus 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
2 tsp salt
1 c coconut oil
1 1/3 c agave nectar
3/4 c unsweetened applesauce
3 tbsp pure vanilla extract
1 c hot water or hot coffee (I used water, since these were for my baby’s first birthday party)
chocolate frosting (recipe follows)

Preheat the oven to 325 F. Line 2 standard 12-cup muffin tins with paper liners.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, potato starch, cocoa powder, arrowroot, baking powder, baking soda, xanthan gum, and salt. Add the oil, agave nectar, applesauce, vanilla, and hot water to the dry ingredients. Stir until the batter is smooth.

Pour 1/3 cup batter into each prepared cup, almost filling it. Bake the cupcakes on the center rack for 22 minutes, rotating the tins 180 degrees after 15 minutes. The finished cupcakes will bounce back when pressure is applied gently to the center.

Let the cupcakes stand in the tins for 20 minutes, then transfer them to a wire rack and cool completely. Using a frosting knife, gently spread 1 tablespoon chocolate frosting over each cupcake. Store the cupcakes in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Makes 24.

Chocolate Frosting
1 1/2 c unsweetened soy milk
1/2 c dry soy milk powder
1/4 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tbsp coconut flour
1/4 c agave nectar
1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
1 c coconut oil
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice

In a blender or food processor, combine the soy milk, soy powder, cocoa powder, coconut flour, agave nectar, and vanilla. Blend the ingredients for 2 minutes. With the machine running, slowly add the oil and lemon juice, alternating between the two until both are fully incorporated. Pour the mixture into an airtight container and refrigerate for 6 hours or for up to 1 month. (If you plan to use it as a sauce, store the mixture at room temperature for up to 1 week.) Makes enough to frost 24 cupcakes.

We just threw our baby’s first birthday party last weekend! I made a batch of these cupcakes, as well as the Sweet Paradise Cake (more on that later). And let me tell you, these were a nice little challenge to make. You might know that I’ve fallen hard for coconut oil recently. It’s heavenly! It’s solid at room temperature, but just a little warmer and it melts. I like to add it to my hot cereal, spread it on toast, drizzle it on air-popped popcorn, eat it right out of the jar… It’s good for you, too! Well, it can also be a little tricky to work with. Neither recipe told me to melt it, but the hot water in the cupcake recipe made it just a tad easier to mix; though I’d maybe use hotter water next time! For the frosting, I would strongly suggest melting it (though don’t make it too hot!) before pouring it into the blender. I ended up having oil-flecked frosting which was unsightly, so I ended up having to microwave the finished product on half power, stopping to stir until it was smooth and uniform. Of course I didn’t think to do this until about 4 hours into chilling time, so I had to wait even longer to frost the cuppies! Grr! Lesson learned. Another trick with the frosting that the author mentions, is to add melted coconut oil to it if your chilled frosting is too runny. Which mine was. When the coconut oil hits the cold frosting it solidifies again, so it’s really quite fascinating to see how adding a liquid actually thickens the mix. Another reason to love coconut oil. I ended up adding about three extra tablespoons.
I really enjoyed these cupcakes because they weren’t overly sweet. And I love that the cocoa is the main flavor. You get a hint of coconut but it isn’t overpowering. Also, there’s no crash a few hours after you just happen to eat one too many… which is something I definitely appreciate.
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