It’s Pi Day!

It’s March 14th, otherwise known as Pi Day! So named, because of the irrational number 3.14 that goes on infinitely. So, enjoy some pie today in honor of the day. Not a fan of pie, have a slice of pizza from a pizza pie or try your hand at a savory pie, like a quiche. Or, you could out on a limb and have some cheesecake. I actually baked a cheesecake a few years ago in honor of the day. I’ve also made a Banana Cream Pie and a Blueberry Pie as well to honor the day.

I was in search of a new pie to make for today and was stumped. I flipped through an entire book dedicated to pies and nothing popped at me and then I remembered I had a bag of shredded coconut in my cabinet that I had purchased to make crispy coconut cookies – which I haven’t gotten around to – so, I decided on a Coconut Custard Pie. This is actually one of my favorite pies from my youth. I remember my Dad bringing home the Entenmann’s version from the supermarket when I was a kid. Unfortunately, Entenmann’s has discontinued it, so the flavor is a distant memory now. I actually tried making Coconut Custard Pie once before and it came out horrible because I didn’t use whole milk and I think the missing fat from the milk was the leading culprit of my failing. The custard never formed.

Thankfully I had no issues with this pie… The custard formed, the shredded coconut rose to the top during baking and it was the perfect balance of the coconut flavor and sweetness.

 

 

Coconut Custard Pie

Ingredients:

1 homemade or store bough 9-inch pie crust*

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

3 eggs, at room temperature, beaten

2 tablespoons flour

1/2 cup sugar

1 cup shredded sweetened coconut

1 1/2 cup whole milk, at room temperature

3/4 teaspoons vanilla extract**

nutmeg

 

*I used a frozen deep-dish one

**For a more of coconut flavor used coconut extract

 

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Arrange pie crust into a 9-inch pie plate.

In a large bowl combine the butter, eggs, flour, sugar, coconut, milk and vanilla extract. Use a hand mixer to blend all of the ingredients together. Make sure the sugar is dissolved.

Pour the mixture into the prepared pie crust and sprinkle with nutmeg. Bake in the preheated oven for 45-60 minutes, covering the edges of the pie with aluminum foil for the first 25 minutes and then remove. Pie will be ready when the custard has puffed up – sides and center.

Remove from the over and place on a wire rack to cool completely.

Recipe from Bunny’s Warm Oven

Coconut Cinnamon Popsicles

Whenever I go to Target I can never stick to the items that are on my list. Somehow, someway other things creep into my shopping cart. I’m sure I’m not alone in this. I just can’t resist walking down random aisles to see what’s available; my favorite though is passing by the end caps to see what items are on clearance. You never know when you can pick up a nice dish, a colorful shower curtain or a cute notebook at a ridiculously low price. That’s how I found the ice pop molds I used to create the Coconut Cinnamon Popsicles I am sharing with you today. I randomly saw them sitting on an end cap for more than 50% off so I figured why not… The deal was too good to pass up and I really liked how the molds sat on the base. Not your typical ice pop mold!
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These ice pops couldn’t be more simpler. In a large bowl I combined cream of coconut, coconut milk, vanilla extract, cinnamon and shredded coconut and mixed them together with my hand mixer until everything was well combined. I then transferred the mixture to a measuring cup to make pouring it into the molds easier (and less messy!) Once that was done I placed them in the freezer overnight so they could harden.
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And the next day I had a delicious (and cold – which is imperative for these final dog days of summer) coconut treat that had a hint of cinnamon! I can’t wait to try out some other flavor combinations with these nifty ice pop molds!
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Coconut Cinnamon Popsicles

Ingredients:

1 13.5 oz. can of coconut milk

1 15oz. can of cream of coconut

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix together with a hand mixer until well blended. Transfer the mixture to a measuring cup and pour into ice pop molds.

Freeze until solid, 3-4 hours, preferably overnight

Coconut & Lime Cupcakes

Happy Cinco de Mayo! It’s the perfect day to enjoy some guacamole, a few tacos, a shot of tequila or a nice cold margarita. That brings me to today’s post. I’ve made some delicious treats in honor of this day in the past – churros, tres leches cupcakesMexican wedding cookies and sopapilla cheesecake – and this year I was thinking of making Margarita Cupcakes. But, since I didn’t have any tequila on hand (all the recipes I came across had this margarita staple in the ingredient list) I opted for something non-alcoholic and just as festive… Coconut & Lime Cupcakes – a coconut cupcake with a key lime cream cheese frosting.

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To begin I made the coconut cupcakes… In the bowl of my stand mixer I mixed together sugar and butter until it was light and fluffy – about 5 minutes on medium speed.

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I then reduced the speed to low and added in three eggs – one at a time.

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Next I added in buttermilk, and a sifted mixture of flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. I alternated between adding the two beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Oh, and can I just take a moment to say that I love this silicone bowl to add things into my running mixer. It’s completely flexible so I can form it into the perfect shape to pour the flour into the bowl and not have it fly all over the place. I used to use a pouring shield but I always had the flying flour issue with it. Check out this link if you have been searching for the perfect bowl to add dry ingredients to your batter while mixing.

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Once the batter came together I folded in sweetened shredded coconut.

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And finally, using an ice cream scoop I divided the mixture among a 12-cup paper lined muffin pan and baked it in a 325 F preheated oven for 25 minutes.

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Once they were out of the oven, I let the cupcakes cool in the pan for 15 minutes before removing them and letting them cool completely on a wire rack in preparation for frosting them.

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After letting the cupcakes cool I got to working on the frosting – a key lime cream cheese frosting that has the perfect combination of sweetness and citrus flavor. I began by creaming together cream cheese, butter, key lime juice and key lime zest until it was creamy. Next I added in 2 cups of sifted confectioners’ sugar one cup at a time – mixing well after each cup. Just to note, if want more of a lime flavor you can add more of the lime juice, but, you may have to balance that with more confectioners’ sugar since you don’t want your frosting to become too thinned down. Prior to frosting the cupcakes I popped the frosting in the fridge for about 10 – 15 minutes so the frosting would be firmer to pipe with.

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And after frosting each of the cupcakes I sprinkled them with a bit of lime zest.

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Coconut Cupcakes – Adapted from here

Makes 12 Cupcakes

Ingredients:

1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 cup sugar

3 large eggs, at room temperature

3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 teaspoon almond extract

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup buttermilk

1 1/2 cups sweetened shredded coconut

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 325 F and line a 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners.

2. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

3. Using a stand mixer or electric hand mixer cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes on medium speed. Reduce the speed to low and add the eggs one at a time, scraping the sides of the bowl down after each addition. Add in the vanilla and almonds extracts and mix well.

4. In three parts, alternately add the flour mixture and the buttermilk to the batter, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Fold in the coconut.

5. Fill each cup of the muffin pan to the top – an ice cream scoop is the perfect size to fill the cups. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes, until the tops are slightly brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Allow the cupcakes to cool in the pan for 15 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Key Lime Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients:

12 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature

2 1/2 tablespoons key lime juice

1 teaspoon key lime zest

2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted

Directions:

Cream together the cream cheese, butter, key lime juice and zest until creamy. Add in the sugar, one cup at a time, and continue mixing until all of the sugar is incorporated. If you find that the frosting is too soft, pop it into the refrigerator for a few minutes so it can firm up before using it.

Tropical Oatmeal Cookies

I came up with the idea for these cookies a while back and while I am sure there is a recipe somewhere floating around on the internet for them, I decided to take a chance and create my own recipe, albeit with some assistance from a few of my favorite cookie recipes. I really had no idea how they would come out, but, in the end they were delicious and incredibly soft and the add-ins of the white chocolate chips, shredded coconut, crushed pineapple and macadamia nuts complemented one another wonderfully.
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To begin I mixed together the dry ingredients – flour, salt and baking soda – and set it aside and then moved on to creaming together butter, sugar and light brown sugar.
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I then added in two eggs – one at a time.
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And then the vanilla extract.
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After adding in the flour mixture – I really did use flour for these cookies even though I don’t have a picture of it – I then added in quick oats.
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And finally I folded in my “tropical ingredients:” white chocolate chips, sweetened shredded coconut, crushed pineapple and macadamia nuts.
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After folding in all of the add-ins I used a cookie scoop to drop mounds of the dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet.
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I baked them in a 325 degrees preheated oven for 11 minutes and then let them cool on the cookie sheet for five minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

 

And while you may think these cookies would be on the sweeter side with the sugars, sweetened coconut and white chocolate chips, the measurements of each of the ingredients produced a cookie that was just the right amount of sweetness to satisfy your sweet tooth.

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Tropical Oatmeal Cookies
Makes 36 cookies
Ingredients
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 cups quick cooking oats
1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup crushed pineapple
1/2 cup chopped macadamia nuts
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
Directions
1. Preheat oven to 325 Degrees F.
2. Combine the dry ingredients – flour, baking soda & salt – and set aside
3. Cream together the butter and the sugars on medium speed until creamy. Beat in the eggs one at a time and then add in the vanilla extract.
4. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and then the oats.
5. Fold in the white chocolate chips, shredded coconut, pineapple and macadamia nuts.
6. Drop rounded tablespoons (a small cookie scoop) of dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 11 minutes.
7. Allow the cookies to cool 5 minutes on the cookie sheet and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
8. Enjoy!