Sweet Potato Frosting

Thursday, October 1, 2009

October is here and to me October means one thing: Halloween. I love the crispness and spookiness of the fall, costumes, haunted houses, the excuse to do any activity related to Poe and everything else about the carnival-gothic atmosphere of the holiday.

While Halloween is still fun as an adult, my fondest Halloween memories are from childhood. I would start dreaming up my Halloween costume around July and my mother would pull out her old sewing machine to help it come to life. Assembling the various props for my costumes was often a family wide effort—my "homie bopper" from my 10 year old Halloween costume as Homie the Clown was courtesy of one of my father's black gold toe socks stuffed with a combination of newspapers and more socks.

But one of the best parts of childhood Halloweens was the school party. Seeing orange cupcakes always reminds me of school parties and the sheer elation that not having class and getting to wear a costume to school evoked in elementary school. So, for Halloween I just had to concoct a frosting that was orange, relatively healthy, low-glycemic, gluten-free and of course, not full of scary dyes and chemicals. The sweet potato was most helpful in this endeavor because not only does it add a natural sweetness but the beta-carotene lends the cupcakes a perfect Halloween orange!

Sweet Potato Frosting (Vegan)

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

1 small baked sweet potato, skin removed and smashed

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 maple syrup and the smashed sweet potato.

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 maple syrup.

More Halloween colors. The chocolate frosting was made using the same method except I omitted the maple syrup and replaced the sweet potato with one and a half-cups of melted, gluten-free vegan 70% Cacao chocolate chips.

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

**Cornstarch can also be substituted

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