Friday, 19 April 2013

Sweet Potato and Coconut Steamed Cupcakes

I got so excited when I found mom's recipe collections... It's like finding a treasure chest full of gold (I wonder if mom has that too... because that would be awesome!).  There are clippings from magazines and newspapers, hand-written recipes and recipes typed with typewriter.  Seriously, gold stuff. 

One of the recipes that caught my attention straight-away is sweet potato and coconut steamed cupcakes...   It may sound unusual to steam cupcakes, but they're so delicious, I've got to share it with all of you.

Unlike regular cupcake batter, this one has yeast in it and the batter needs to prove like making breads.  But the yeast here it really is the only raising agent. The cupcakes will bloom up and crack as they cook in the steamer. I prefer the cupcakes when they're still warm... soft with a nice chewy texture.

Just a note, because of the coconut content, if you happen to have some leftovers, they need to be stored in the fridge and re-steam before serving.  

Sweet Potato and Coconut Steamed Cupcakes
Recipe by Mom
Makes about 35 mini cupcakes

200 gr sweet potato
500 gr plain flour
325 ml water
125 gr palm sugar, or substitute with dark brown sugar
125 gr caster sugar
2 eggs
300 ml coconut milk
11 gr dried yeast

Start by steaming the sweet potatoes until they're cooked.  Peel the skin and finely grate them.  

In a sauce pan, add 250 ml of water with the sugars and cook on medium heat, just until the sugars dissolved.  Take it off the heat and let it cool.

In the mean time, in a small bowl, add 125 ml of water with the dried yeast and 4 tablespoons of the flour.  Give them a mix and leave for 10 minutes.  The mixture will be foamy which is a good sign, meaning the yeast is alive and working. 

Using a hand/free-standing mixer, whisk the eggs for few minutes until it doubles in volume and form ribbons when dripped from the whisk.  Add the yeast mixture, cooled sugar, remaining flour, baking soda, sweet potato, coconut milk and whisk again until all is nicely combined.  Cover the batter with cling film or clean tea towel for 45 minutes to an hour.  Now is a good time to line your little cups with mini cupcake/muffin paper cases, and also to prepare your steamer.

When the batter has doubled in size, it is now time to fill the little cups.  The easiest way to do this is by using a spoon.  Try to handle the batter delicately as we want to keep as much air as possible.  It's about a couple of heaped tablespoons for each little cup, but that really depends on the size of cups you're using.  Steam the cupcakes for 12 - 15 minutes.  To test if the steam cupcakes are ready, insert a skewer into the cake and see if it comes out clean without wet batter.    

Serve warm or at room temperature.  Store the leftovers in the fridge and they can be re-steamed before serving.


  1. These loks amazing!! Have to try them soon!

  2. Very, warm - whatever.

  3. Nothing better than Mom's recipes! These are unusual and look wonderful, Michael.

  4. My mum steams a cake and it is so fluffy and delicious so I can really imagine that this is gorgeous :D

  5. I think it's great that you have your mom's recipe collection. I have my grandmother's and it's something I will always treasure!
    These cupcakes sound very interesting and they look wonderful!!

  6. Very unusual, and certainly delicious sweet potato treats made with yeast, and steamed? The combination of the brown sugar and coconut milk really gives it such a wonderful flavor!