Saturday, April 5, 2014

Raw PB & J Banana Cupcakes


Random fact about me.  When I was 5, I wanted to change my name to Amy Sparkle because I loved sparkly things so much.  I find that just funny now, but I still love sparkly things so now whenever I am happy I say I am feeling sparkly.  Sparkly is the word for me being really happy, and it is exactly how I feel when eating a really good raw dessert, like these Raw PB&J Cupcakes. 


I may be 28 years old, but I still love the combination of PB&J. Especially in desserts...because if you think about it a PB&J sandwich is kind of like dessert as it is, rich and sweet.  Watching my coworker making a PB&J sandwich for a little girl that came into the deli where I work last week made me start to crave that flavor combination.  So, I transformed that craving into these Raw PB&J Banana Cupcakes.  


The batter for the cake part was delicious.  Sweet banana with peanut butter and a hint of maca (one of my favorite things to pair with PB)...I knew these were going to be awesome.  Once they had dehydrated I made a quick berry chia jam.  Berry jams were always my favorite, my Mom always had raspberry at her house when I was a kid, and my Dad always had strawberry, so it is classic to have berry to me.  I made a creamy peanut butter laced coconut cream frosting for these that was out of this world.  Seriously, I could have sat down and ate the whole bowl right then and there it was that good.  But then my cupcakes would have been naked so I didn't.  Once they were all assembled, these were freaking delicious.  If you make these...I guarantee you will feel sparkly too!


Raw PB & J Banana Cupcakes
Makes 8 

Cake:
1 1/4 cups raw sprouted buckwheat, raw sprouted oat, or raw sprouted quinoa flour  
1 cup ground raw flaxseed 
2 1/2 cups raw coconut flour (do NOT use store-bought!)

1/4 tsp sea salt
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
1 cups young coconut meat*
1/2 cup raw jungle peanut butter
2 cups sliced banana
1/2 cup raw lucuma powder
2 Tbsp raw maca powder
1/2 cup medjool dates, pitted (soaked in filtered water for 30 minutes if not soft, then drained)
1/3 cup raw coconut nectar or your choice of liquid sweetener
1 cups coconut water (or as needed)


Filling:
2 cups fresh organic mixed berries (I used strawberries, blueberries and raspberries)
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp coconut nectar or your choice of liquid raw sweetener
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
a pinch sea salt
3 Tbsp chia seeds

 Frosting: 

1 1/2 cups young coconut meat*
3/4 cup raw jungle peanuts
1/4 cup plus 1 Tbsp coconut water
1/3 cup raw coconut nectar or raw agave nectar
1/4  tsp sea salt

seeds of one vanilla bean, or 1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp raw coconut butter, warmed to liquid


fresh organic berries and jungle peanuts for garnish (optional)

For the cake batter, combine flour,  flaxseed, coconut flour, sea salt, in a large bowl and whisk together until and set aside. To a food processor, add the dates, vanilla, coconut, nectar, and water to the processor and process until pretty smooth. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until smooth with a sturdy spoon (wooden works well) and well incorporated (the batter will be stiff, so you might want to use your stand mixer if you have one).  Spoon the batter into 8 standard sized foil muffin tins (mounded high because it will not rise) and place on a dehydrator sheet.  Dry for about 12-14 hours (until dry on the outside but still moist). Cut a divet into the top of each cupcake (you can eat the scraps).
Meanwhile, to make the filling, combine all ingredients but the chia seeds in a high speed blender until smooth.  Add the chia seeds and blend briefly. Spoon about 1 Tbsp into the center of each cupcake and place in the fridge for an hour to chill.  
 Meanwhile, to make the frosting combine all ingredients but the coconut butter in a food processor and process until smooth.  With the motor running, add the coconut butter and process a minute more.  Pour the frosting into a bowl and let sit in the freezer for about half an hour to 45 minutes or so until the consistency of whipped cream or frosting.  
Once the frosting is ready, place the frosting in a pastry bag, and pipe decoratively over the tops of the cupcakes (or you can spread it on if you like).  Decorate cupcakes with fresh berries and jungle peanuts.  Store the cupcakes in the fridge. 

*If you do not have access to young coconut meat, for the batter, you can sub 2 cups finely shredded, dried coconut and 1 cup filtered water buzzed up in a high speed blender until creamy for it. Then for the frosting, 1 1/2 cups raw cashews soaked for 4 hours and drained well before using.




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