Coconut Mug Cake - Easy-Peasy or Fancy-Schmancy

Here's another mug cake that you can easily throw together, even if you came home from work so tired that you served pasta with sauce straight out of the jar straight out of the fridge.

 Like anything microwaved, the naked coconut cake "cooks" up with a pasty pale yellow top.  Kinda like the New York City Charlotte Russe cakes that never made it home from the bakery when I was a kid.  For the easy version, don't bother toasting the coconut and simply grab a can of whipped cream.  Your family will probably still love you. For the fancy-schmancy version, take a few minutes to toast some coconut and chop a few maraschino cherries.

Coconut is still healthy this week, so by all means crack open a can of coconut for the 3 tablespoons needed.  Or use whatever flavored non-dairy creamer you have at hand.  My son's girlfriend left a bottle of Caramel Macchiato in the fridge, which boosts the flavor nicely.  By an interesting loophole, non-dairy creamer can call itself non-dairy even if it contains sodium caseinate (a milk derivative) because it does not contain lactose.  If you want to completely avoid milk cooties, check the label.

Coconut Mug Cake  
Adapted from Mug Cakes by Leslie Bilderback (St. Martin’s Griffin, 2013) 
Yield: 2 mug cakes

1 large egg
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3 Tbl. canned coconut milk (or Caramel Macchiato or your favorite liquid non-dairy creamer)
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/3 cup unbleached flour
1/4 tsp. baking powder
Pinch kosher salt
1/4 cup shredded sweetened coconut (preferably toasted), plus an additional tablespoon for garnish
whipped cream, for garnish
3-4 chopped maraschino cherries, for garnish

In a large straight-sided mug, beat egg with a fork. Beat in sugar, coconut milk (or non-dairy substitute) and vanilla. Sprinkle in flour, baking powder and salt. Stir until batter is smooth, making sure to stir up from the bottom.

Gently stir in 1/4 cup of the coconut. Divide batter evenly between two mugs.

Place both mugs on opposite sides of turntable, handles turned inward. Microwave at full (100%) power for 2 – 2 1/2 minutes or until tops are set and dry, and cakes start to pull away from sides of mugs.

Let sit for 1 minute to finish cooking. Serve directly from the mugs.  Alternatively, run a tableknife around edge of cake and tip out onto dessert plate.    Serve warm or cooled, garnished if desired with whipped cream, remaining coconut and maraschino cherries.

Note: For one serving, use 1 egg white, pinch of salt and half of the other ingredients.  Microwave for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes.


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