Tag Archives: Meringue

“The Marano Ciaocake”

14 Nov

Lemon Coconut Cupcake with Meringue Topping

People inspire me and inevitably, my baking is inspired by people I meet/know. There are times however that I bake not knowing who it’s for, certain that, by the end of the day, I will have found who to dedicate the bake of the day to.

That was the case with this (very) delicious cupcake I made for the very first time last week. It’s an easy recipe and contains fewer calories than your average cupcake (or so I like to tell myself), thanks to the meringue topping (in other words: no confectioner’s sugar). I made a batch and took a photo of the result with my phone and, like I always do, posted it on Facebook. I then took them to work to thank two colleagues who helped me with a presentation, but kept one aside.

My lovely Italian colleague, Pierangelo Marano, happened to be visiting our offices that day and when he saw me he said, with his gorgeous Italian accent that makes you want to eat pizza all day:

Ciao bella! Those pictures of cakes on your Facebook – you make them? All of them? It’s amaaaazing!”

He couldn’t contain his excitement when I replied: ‘Si!’. He said: “Oooooh that lemon cupcake this morning is my favourite, it looks beauuutiful!”. I gave him a wink and ran to my office to get him that one cupcake I had set aside. He indulged in it and has been begging for the recipe ever since.

And so the ‘The Marano Ciaocake’ was born. Buon appetito!

Coconut Lemon Meringue Cupcake

Delicious Meringue on Top

Makes 12 cupcakes | 45 min prep | 30 min oven | 1hr cool


160g (1 ¼ cup) flour, sieved | bloem, gezeefd

3 teaspoons (7.8g) baking powder, sieved | tl bakpoeder, gezeefd

155g (8/10 cup) soft white sugar | witte basterdsuiker

65g (¼ cup) soft unsalted butter | zachte ongezouten boter

2 eggs | eieren

125ml (½ cup) coconut milk | kokosmelk

juice & zest from one lime | sap & rasp van 1 limoen

65g (2/3 cup) grated coconut | geraspte kokos


2 egg whites | eiwitten

juice & zest from one lime | sap & rasp van 1 limoen

125g (2/3 cup) fine table sugar | fijne tafelsuiker

Method: Pre-heat your oven to 170°C (338°F). In a big bowl place the flour, baking powder, soft white sugar, a pinch of salt and the butter. Use the mixer on a slow speed until the ingredients gain a sandy texture, about 5-10 minutes. Add the eggs and mix until they’re well incorporated. With the mixer still on, add the coconut milk, the lime juice and zest. Once everything’s well mixed, quickly turn the speed to the highest stand and then turn it off. With a spoon, softly include the grated coconut.

Fill two-thirds of the cupcake forms with the batter and bake 20-25 minutes. Let them first cool down for five minutes before removing them from the form and letting them cool completely.

In the meantime, on medium speed, beat the egg whites and one or two teaspoons of the lime juice in a clean (and dry) rvs bowl, until just stiff. Boil water in a pan, lower the heat and place the rvs bowl into it, au bain-marie. Bit by bit, add the sugar while mixing – until you get a shiny, stiff meringue (because of the heat from the water, the egg whites cook). Finally, add the lemon zest through the meringue.

Increase the oven temperature to 185°C (365°F). Scoop the meringue onto each cupcake with pointy twirl to make it look pretty. Place them on an oven tray and in the middle of the oven for five minutes, until the meringue gets a bit of colour. Let cool and serve!