Eating the spiders is optional…
I devised this recipe to enter into a competition on the CoYo Coconut Yoghurt Facebook page – wish me luck! The challenge was to make a spooky Halloween recipe using CoYo as an ingredient. CoYo is a fantastic product – dairy-free yoghurt made from cultivating coconut milk with pro-biotics – yum. Since pumpkins are synonymous with Halloween my first thought was to create something using it as the star ingredient. Now the last time I (well my friend Jackie actually) carved a pumpkin it was a bit of an effort and the pumpkin flesh we then used for a soup was rather tasteless. The carved pumpkins on the other hand were rather spectacular (see below!) I therefore rather lazily decided for these muffins that I would make use of the Libby’s canned pumpkin which is available to buy in places such as Waitrose and Whole Foods.
I’ve made muffins with butternut squash before so I knew this would work. I looked at the way the wet to dry ratios work in my usual cupcake mix came up with this instead. I decided to put a bit of the yoghurt into the raw mix itself too, since I’ve seen Greek yoghurt used in cake recipes as well as coconut milk too (the consistency of CoYo is like Greek Yoghurt but with the taste of Coconut milk). Just 1 Tablespoon of CoYo was perhaps rather sparing, but I didn’t want to upset the alchemy of the recipe just in case.
CoYo has a great yoghurty tang. By using it to frost these cupcakes I have finally achieved a creamy topping that is not avocado and is officially dairy free (some of my other cupcakes use cream cheese). These spooky mini pumpkin muffins are therefore dairy, gluten, grain and refined sugar free. An ideal spooky Halloween party treat.
Unfortunately I have no idea how I could made a pumpkin face for the top of these without using some paper cut-outs. I did spend a few hours of my Sunday afternoon getting a bit messy with 70% chocolate trying to fashion some spiders webs . However this was in hindsight a little too technical for my fair hands at this stage – though I did enjoy eating all the ruined efforts…
Ingredients (Makes 12)
- 25g sifted coconut flour (Tiana)
- ½ tsp gluten free baking powder
- 1.5 tsps of a warming spice – I used 1 tsp of Steenbergs Koekkruiden baking spice mix (which is a combination of cinnamon, ginger, ground clove, cardamom + ground anise seed), plus I added an additional ½ tsp of ground cinnamon, but to simplify you can use any combination of the above powders to suit your fancy.
- Pinch of salt (Himalayan or Celtic sea salt)
- 3 large free-range eggs
- 75g pumpkin puree (I used Libby’s tinned pumpkin puree for ease)
- 50mls melted extra virgin coconut oil
- 2.5 tablespoons organic honey
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon CoYo
- 3 Tablespoons of CoYo
- 1.5 tsp of pumpkin puree
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 1.5 tsp coconut palm sugar
- 1.5 tsp melted coconut oil
- Optional: Spooky pumpkin cut outs and spiders to decorate – mine weren’t edible!
- Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees C (fan assisted).
- Sift coconut flour into a bowl with the other dry ingredients – baking powder, spice & salt.
- In another bowl whisk the eggs together, then add in the other wet ingredients – pumpkin puree, coconut oil, honey and vanilla extract and whisk. Finally stir in the Coyo.
- Pour the dry ingredients into the wet, and stir together till a smooth loose wet batter is formed.
- Take a mini muffin silicone tray, and distribute the mixture evenly – the mix should be level with the top of each muffin mould.
- Bake in the middle of the oven for 18 minutes. I then turned the oven off and left the muffins in there for 10 minutes to make sure they had baked through. Remove from the oven, and leave to cool in the silicone tray before popping them out onto a cooling rack to cool completely whilst you make the topping. At this stage you could freeze the muffins.
- Take a small bowl and mix 3 tablespoons of Coyo along with the rest of the ingredients. Stir well to make sure the mix is a uniformed light orange colour and the coconut palm sugar is incorporated.
- When the muffins have cooled sufficiently take a dollop (roughly a teaspoon) of the icing and smooth onto the top of the cupcake. Decorate with any spooky paraphernalia you have to hand!
- Will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for a couple of days. Ideally if you are not intending eating on the day of making, then I would leave adding the frosting till you are ready to eat!