These vegan banana maple cupcakes topped with caramelized cornflakes are the perfect morning pick-me-up.
8 to 12
1 very ripe banana
1 1/4 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegan butter, melted
1/3 cup canned coconut milk
1/2 cup soy milk
1 teaspoon coconut vinegar or apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon banana extract
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Maple pudding filling:
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup full-fat canned coconut milk
3/4 cup soy milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoon maple extract
1 teaspoon vegan butter
Caramelized cornflake topping:
2 cups cornflakes
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup cornmeal + 2 tablespoons for dusting
1/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup vegan butter, melted
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup vegan butter
2-2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoons maple extract
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons soy milk
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a muffin pan with 12 cupcake liners or trace a 9-inch round cake pan on parchment paper with a pencil. Cut the circle out. Coat the cake pan with nonstick spray and flour and place parchment paper circle on top.
In a medium bowl, mash ripe banana with a fork. Measure out 1/2 cup and set aside.
Sift the flour, baking soda, baking powder, sugar and salt in a medium-sized bowl.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the butter, banana, coconut milk, soy milk, vinegar and extracts until well incorporated and a little foamy looking.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, and stir with a rubber spatula until just combined.
Using an ice cream scooper, fill cupcake liners about 2/3 full. Bake for 18 minutes or until a knife comes out clean. Transfer to cooling rack. For 9-inch cake, bake for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when poked in the center of the cake.
To remove cake from pan, place a cooling rack upside down on top of cake, then flip over. Place on a flat surface, and slowly remove the cake pan and parchment paper. Allow to fully cool before slicing in half.
Prepare maple pudding. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, whisk together sugar, cornstarch and salt. Whisk in the coconut milk and soy milk, stirring constantly for about 5 minutes until the mixture is thick and pudding-like. Turn off heat and whisk in vanilla extract, maple extract and butter until combined.
Transfer to a bowl and put plastic wrap directly on the entire surface of the pudding. (This prevents pudding skin from forming.) Store in refrigerator for about 1 hour.
Prepare cornflakes. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl, carefully toss the cornflakes with the maple syrup, 1/4 cup cornmeal, flour, salt and butter.
Spread the cornflakes out evenly on the baking pan and dust with cornmeal. Bake for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure they cook evenly. Remove tray from oven, stir the flakes, and let them sit on the baking pan to harden. When completely cooled and hardened, store in a Ziploc bag.
Prepare maple frosting. Using an electric mixer, cream together the shortening and butter on high speed until completely smooth. Add in the powdered sugar; mix until just combined. Add the maple extract, vanilla extract and soy milk. Mix on high until frosting is very light, almost whipped cream like.
If making cupcakes, use a knife to cut a quarter-sized circle out of the center of each cupcake. Fill the cupcake with 1 tablespoon of the pudding, then frost with the maple frosting. Top each cupcake with a handful of caramelized cornflakes.
If making a cake, place one of the cakes directly on a serving plate. Spread the pudding mixture on top of the cake layer, leaving about a 2-3 inch border. (If the pudding is too thick, stir in some soy milk.) Place the other cake layer on top of the pudding layer, pressing down lightly. Frost cake and sprinkle with caramelized cornflakes.