These deliciously spicy muffins are ‘kissed’ with a touch of the Tropics – a buttered-rum-coconut heart that will have you swooning with every bite. The unusual addition of cornmeal makes the muffins even more wholesome texturally, and the addition of a dollop of sour cream in the batter provides a tender crumb. Don’t let the long list of ingredients phase you – these come together in no time at all.
Buttered-Rum Coconut Kiss
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2⁄3 cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons rum
- 1 1⁄2 cups desiccated coconut (dry)
- 1 egg
- 1⁄2 cup butter, room temperature
- 2⁄3 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup pumpkin (I made mine fresh from a butternut squash) or 1 cup squash puree (I made mine fresh from a butternut squash)
- 1 the orange, juice and zest of (the juice totaled just over 1/4 cup)
- 1⁄3 cup sour cream
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1⁄2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1⁄2 teaspoon clove
- 1⁄2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- Make the Buttered-Rum Coconut ‘Kiss’: Melt butter over medium-high heat in a small saucepan. Cook for 1-2 minutes, watching carefully, until the butter turns nut-brown (this is called ‘beurre noisette’) and is very fragrant – be careful not to burn. Immediately remove from heat and add sugar, rum and coconut. Combine well to mix butter and rum throughout and to cool slightly. Stir in egg, combining well. Using a rounded teaspoon as a measure, separate the coconut mixture into 12 portions and roll them into balls, resembling meatballs. Space apart on a plate and put in refrigerator to firm up while preparing the muffin batter.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (170 degrees Centigrade).
- For Muffins: Cream butter for 1 minute. Add sugar and beat 4 more minutes, or until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs.
- In separate bowl, whisk together pumpkin puree, orange zest and juice and sour cream.
- In a third bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients.
- Stir 1/3 of the flour mixture into the creamed butter mixture; mix in ½ the pumpkin puree mixture and add another 1/3 of the flour mixture. Stir in remaining pumpkin puree and flour and mix well.
- Distribute batter evenly among 12 well-greased or paper-lined muffin cups. Place a coconut ‘kiss’ onto the top of each muffin and press in so nearly half the kiss is immersed in batter.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the muffin batter comes out clean.