A Southern Grace: a little r&r

February 20, 2014

a little r&r


Lots of people find the distinct flavor and texture of raisins offensive. Those shriveled little pellets can bring out some really strong feelings and for many, they can be a legitimate reason to actually turn down a free, fresh-from-the-oven cookie.

I usually like raisins, especially golden raisins. They're great in granola and muffins and I don't mind them in certain cookies. While I've never tried rum-raisin ice cream, I know it exists. Raisins in ice cream? Seems weird.

Cupcakes also seem like a stretch, as the raisins should feel jarring within their soft, fluffy texture. Because my curiosity can never be satisfied, I tried the combination anyway, but I bulked them up and added even more texture with some shredded coconut. Because I'm a Malibu girl and because I needed to find out for myself why Haagen Dazs put rum and raisins into the same batch of ice cream, there's a good bit of rum in these little cakes too.

As it turns out, coconut, raisins, and rum make a pretty good team. You don't necessarily taste the rum in the cupcakes, but I added it to the frosting too, so it's definitely discernible. The chewy raisins don't seem so bad in combination with the strands of coconut, and their flavors combine nicely. All in all, both the texture and taste of these cupcakes are wonderful! Nothing ventured, nothing gained, I guess.

Risky Rum Raisin Cupcakes
Based on a recipe from Martha Stewart's Cupcakes: 175 Inspired Ideas for Everyone's Favorite Treat
Makes 18
  • 5 ounces (10 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup dark rum
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1-1/2 cups brown sugar, tightly packed
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Generous 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup sweetened flaked coconut
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2-3 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 2-3 tablespoons milk
  • Rum, to taste
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line muffin tins with cupcake liners.
In a bowl pour rum over the raisins and set aside to soak.
In another bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.
Cream butter and brown sugar in bowl of electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy and pale in color.
Add eggs one at a time, beating after each until well incorporated; beat in vanilla and reduce speed to low.
Add flour alternating with cream until combined, then add raisin mixture and coconut.
Fill muffin cups 3/4 full and bake for about 30 minutes. Let cool completely.
To make the frosting, beat the pulp out of the butter with an electric mixer for a few minutes; add the rum and milk and briefly blend.
Add the powdered sugar gradually until frosting is thick enough to spread easily. You may not use all the sugar. If the frosting is too dry, add additional milk until desired consistency is reached.
To finish, pipe or spread frosting atop each cupcake.


Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Terrific! Those cupcakes are simply amazing. One of my favorite flavor combos ever!



Rosita Vargas said...

OMG se ve muy delicioso me gusta,abrazos.

Alicia Foodycat said...

I can't believe you've never had rum raisin ice cream! Correct that as soon as possible!

Nutmeg Nanny said...

These cupcakes look amazing!! What a delicious flavor :) I love it

Marjie said...

Cupcakes! Personal mini cakes! What's not to love? Raisins and coconut sound great together.

Beth said...

You're right about raisins. I'm a big fan, but my daughters won't touch them. These cupcakes look terrific!

Angie's Recipes said...

Rum and raisins...a perfect combo for me. Your cupcake looks wonderful.

pam said...

Raisins don't bother me at all, especially when they are accompanied with rum.

Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic said...

I like raisins, but only when I'm expecting them haha. I especially like them in boozy desserts, like rum raisin ice cream (and recently I had rum raisin Kitkats in Japan). I would like these!

Joanne said...

I always go back and forth on raisins...sometimes I like them, sometimes not. But perhaps with rum and coconut to entice me, I could be convinced...

Alex said...

Those cupcakes are winking at me! :) Love the flavours!

Unknown said...

la recette que j'ai ne me satisfait pas ,je suis très preneuse !! merci par avance
un bon recette j'ais déjà traité un site comme ca http://le-couscous-marocain.blogspot.com

Choc Chip Uru @ Go Bake Yourself said...

Raisins in themselves are quite nice but I think people do not like them because they are often mistaken to be chocolate chips :P
But they look gorgeous in your cupcakes!

Choc Chip Uru

Anonymous said...

I've never thought to put raisins in cupcakes, but yours look delicious. And I'm with you, golden raisins are the best. I've used them recently in granola, applesauce, bread . . . they are tasty indeed. Thanks for the inspiring cupcake recipe.

Pam said...

I am a non raisin girl but these cupcakes make me want to give raisins a chance! They look moist, delicious, and so flavorful.

Big Rigs 'n Lil' Cookies said...

I have never given golden raisins a chance. But, because I trust your taste buds, I am going to try them. See how I cave to peer pressure? :)

I Wilkerson said...

What an interesting flavor combo. I have to admit I sometimes avoid raisins and other times find them quite fine.

sprinklesandsauce said...

yum! forgot how much i like rum and raisin! thanks for reminding!

Blond Duck said...

I've never thought of raisins in cupcakes!

Katerina said...

I love raisins and in fact we use them a lot in Greece. These cupcakes are right up my alley!