I always have a tough time finding lighter recipes to bake during the warmer months. No one really wants to eat heavily frosted cakes or dense chocolately treats. You want something light and slightly sweet. When I think of summer baking, I always turn to pies and other fruity desserts.
Last Friday night was my first ever "Shabarbecue" (Shabbat barbecue) and I was faced with this same challenge- baking a dessert that would be appropriate to a friendly outdoor BBQ and campfire. But since we were grilling meat, my dessert had to be dairy-free. Because I didn't have time to go to the store for Earth Balance or fresh fruits, I had to get creative. I came up with these amazing treats:
Coconut Apricot Muffins (dairy-free)
Recipe very heavily adapted from New Baking Book
Yield: 1 dozen muffins
1 3/4 cups All-purpose flour (sifted)
1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut + extra for garnish
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
2 tsps baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup light coconut milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 large egg, beaten
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup dried and sulphered apricots (chopped) + 6 cut in half
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients, minus the chopped apricots. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients.
Form a well in the center of the dry ingredients and quickly add in the wet ingredients. Then stir together with a wooden spoon until mostly combined. Now add in the chopped apricots and mix just until the dry flour is incorporated.
Fill a lined muffin tin 2/3 full. Bake at 350°F for 10 minutes, then remove from the oven. Place a sliced apricot at the top of each and sprinkle with the extra shredded coconut. Then bake for another 10 minutes.
Cool muffins in pans on wire racks for five minutes, then remove muffins from tins to finish cooling completely on the wire racks.
Store in an air-tight container until serving to preserve moisture.
They were not only the perfect ending to a perfect Shabarbecue, but they were also light a fluffy, making them a perfect summer-time breakfast or snack any day of the week!
Not only was this my first Shabarbecue, but it was my MSPP friend Valerie's first Shabbat ever! It was a beautiful night, complete with family, friends, my new dog, Peanut, and a campfire. It was a wonderful way to bring together friends from different parts of my life, and spread the summer loving.
Happy summer baking!
Love and cookies,