This week's Sweet Melissa Sundays was selected by Eliana of A Chica Bakes: coconut pecan frosting. If you've ever had German chocolate cake, you probably recognize this frosting as the traditional topping and/or filling for the cake. Personally, I've never tried German chocolate cake, so I only knew this fact because Melissa told us in the blurb before the recipe :) I'm not a fan of pecans, which is probably why this cake has never been on my radar. It also means I left the pecans out this week, and the absence of the nuts really left my frosting looking quite yellow, don't you think? I remade the chocolate malted cupcakes from Melissa's book (we made them back in April - my post here) to go with the frosting, and since we're only 28 days from Halloween now, I also thought it appropriate to use Halloween liners for the cupcakes.
In retrospect, this frosting is pretty simple to make, but there was some stress along the way. I like really clear, precise instructions when I make something for the first time, and I thought they were a bit lacking in this recipe. Basically, you combine evaporated milk, sugar, egg yolks, butter, vanilla extract and salt in a pan and cook them "until thickened" before adding the coconut and pecans. I wasn't sure how thick the mixture should be and I think a temperature or a more detailed description would have been helpful here. To be safe and eliminate any risk from the raw egg yolks, I cooked until the mixture reached 160 F. I then strained it to remove the little bits of eggs that cooked before adding the coconut and pecans.
I enjoyed the frosting, though it is quite sweet. The pecans would probably have been a nice counterpoint to the sweetness, if I'd included them. Many thanks to Eliana for hosting this week! She will post the frosting recipe on her blog today or you can find it on page 103 of The Sweet Melissa Baking Book.
On Friday I mentioned being excited about getting apples and pumpkins this fall, and I'm happy to say we checked both tasks off our list this weekend! I came home with 8 pounds of Macintosh and 8 pounds of Cortland - suffice it to say I've got a lot of apple baking in my future. As for the pumpkins, we picked up two huge ones to decorate and display. It's a yearly tradition for us to decorate pumpkins - one we started about 5 years ago - and I just love it. Even though I have a pretty big stash of canned pumpkin in the pantry, I've also got one tiny sugar pumpkin that I'll use to make puree from scratch. It's a fun process and I like to do it at least once in the fall. Have I mentioned that I love October? :)