Sculptural Coconut Vegan Frosting

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

What is a cupcake without piles of luscious frosting? But, what is the purpose of making a healthy low-glycemic cupcake if you smother it full of fat and sugar? Most Vegan frosting recipes are full of either earth balance or some other fake butter and powdered sugar, or on the holistic basis, gobs of coconut Oil and agave, which while healthier than butter and powdered sugar, still doesn't make you feel exactly light and happy after eating a cupcake.

So, I came up with a frosting that is much lower in sugar and fat with the added bonus of making you feel full thanks to the wonders of agar; a frosting worthy of sitting atop a coconut cupcake with super powers.

I should add a few disclaimers— The people who like this best are often the people who find cake and icing too sweet. You can add more Agave to taste. However, the above cupcakes still receive an enthusiastic reception from dairy, sugar and gluten-eaters as well as the vegans, health conscious and gluten-intolerant.

While the texture will be wonderfully light and fluffy when spread with a knife or using a traditional pastry bag, a mechanical pastry bag will compress it and produce a texture more similar to traditional frosting. The cupcakes in the photo were iced with the William-Sonoma mechanical pastry bag ($28.00) which I have quickly come to find an indispensable dessert making accessory particularly for "boutique" cupcakes.

Sculptural Coconut Frosting (Vegan)

3.5 C. Light Coconut Milk*
Tbs. Agar Powder
Tbs. Arrowroot Powder**
1/3 C.
Sea Salt
C. Light Coconut Milk

1. In a saucepan whisk together 3.5 C. Light Coconut Milk, Agar Powder, Arrowroot and Sea Salt at room temperature.

2. Bring to a low boil and then simmer for 5 minutes.

3. Allow mixture to cool and then refrigerate for 5 hours to overnight.

4. You will have a gelatin-like coconut milk brick. Slice it into a few chunks and put into a vita-mixer or blender with the agave.

5. Blend on low thinning with the additional .5 C. of coconut milk 1 Tbs. at a time until it reaches a creamy frosting consistency. You may use more or less milk to achieve this. The processing breaks down the gelling properties of the agar. Do not over blend.

6. Spread or pipe onto coconut flour cupcakes with super powers. For boutique worthy cupcakes, use a mechanical pastry bag.

Options: For richer frosting use 100% coconut milk, for sweeter icing, increase the agave. To give the frosting a "waxier" texture similar to some commercial frostings, melt 6 tablespoons of coconut oil (make sure no hard chunks) and add to vita-mixer when combining agave and gelled coconut milk. Icing will harden once coconut oil cools to room temperature.

*To make light coconut milk use 1 part 100% coconut milk to 2 parts water

**Cornstarch can also be substituted

The other cupcakes in the photo are frosted with chocolate and sweet potato vegan frostings which begin with this frosting as a base. I will put those recipes up in the next posts.

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