3rd Annual National Cupcake Day – Help Fight Animal Cruelty

Celebrity Chef Anna Olson
Celebrity Chef Anna Olson

On February, 23rd, bake, decorate, share (and eat!) delicious cupcakes in support of the third annual National Cupcake Day which raises funds for SPCAs and Humane Societies across Canada.

Beginning now, everyone is invited to bake their best cupcakes, host a cupcake party, share cupcakes with family, friends and colleagues, and collect donations to help raise much needed funds for all fuzzy friends, big and small, that have been abused, abandoned or are in need of help. Showing your support has never been easier or tastier! Get involved now – here’s what to do:

1. Register for FREE at www.nationalcupcakeday.ca;
2. You will receive a FREE Cupcake Host Welcome Package in the mail, which includes a poster, sticker, balloons,fundraising guide and recipes to get you started;
3. Personalize your National Cupcake Day Online Bakery page and send it out to everyone you know;
4. Encourage friends and family to support you by donating online;
5. Plan your National Cupcake Day Party for home, work, school or wherever you think people would love to eat your cupcakes;
6. Bake, decorate, eat and share delicious cupcakes to raise funds for Canada’s SPCAs and Humane Societies;
7. Collect and forward funds to SPCAs and Humane Societies in your community.

And for some baking inspiration, here is a yummy cupcake recipe courtesy of Celebrity Chef Anna Olson, Ontario SPCA National Cupcake Day spokesperson.

Lemon Coconut Cupcakes

Lemon Coconut Cupcakes
Cupcake Ingredients:
2 ½ cups cake & pastry flour
1 ½ cups sugar, divided
1 Tbsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
1 Tbsp finely grated lemon zest
¾ cup buttermilk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
¼ cup lemon juice
2 large eggs, separated
1 ½ tsp vanilla extract

Baking Instructions: Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C) and line 2 muffin tins with paper cupcake liners. Sift the flour with 1 cup of the sugar, baking powder and salt into a large bowl. Stir in the lemon zest. In a separate bowl, whisk the buttermilk, oil, lemon juice, egg yolks and vanilla. Whisk this into the dry mixture until well-blended and set aside while whipping the whites. Using electric beaters or a stand mixer fitted with the whip attachment, whip the egg whites until they are frothy and then gradually add the remaining ½ cup of sugar while whipping. Continue to whip until the beaters hold a soft peak when lifted (this will take about 3 minutes, and the whites will be very glossy). Fold the whites into the batter in 2 additions until evenly blended. Spoon the batter (using an ice cream scoop is easiest) into the prepared muffin tins and bake for 15-17 minutes until the cupcakes spring back in the centre when gently pressed (the cupcakes will not brown much). Allow the cupcakes to cool in the tins before frosting.

Coconut Frosting Ingredients:
¾ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
4-6 cups icing sugar, sifted
6 Tbsp coconut milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp coconut extract sweetened flaked coconut, for décor
CHIPITS White Chocolate Chips, for décor

Icing Instructions: Beat the butter and 2 cups of the icing sugar with electric beaters or using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, until blended. Add the coconut milk, vanilla and coconut extract and beat in. Add 2 more cups of icing sugar, beat on low speed and then beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, adding more icing sugar as needed until the frosting holds its shape when the beaters are lifted (the variation in amount of icing sugar is due to how soft the butter is, and how warm and/or humid the weather is). Spoon or pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes and sprinkle with coconut and CHIPITS White Chocolate Chips. Do not refrigerate the cupcakes, if preparing ahead.

For more info visit www.nationalcupcakeday.ca