The muffin really is the great afterthought of the baking world.
It’s not sexy, it’s not especially pretty, and Dominque Ansel probably ain’t gonna produce a 1000-person line out of his front door by genetically splicing one with a donut.
Which is sad, really. There’s something warm and comforting and honest about the muffin that its flashy, frosting-crowned cousin the cupcake just can’t replicate. Hell, you can’t even eat a warm cupcake without the frosting sloughing off the top like a gross dessert snake shedding for the winter. That’s point one for our friend, the muffin.
So, yeah, they’re not cool. And Coconut-Date Muffins don’t sound very cool either. So what? Your taste buds don’t give a shit whether they’re eating something cool for breakfast, and you shouldn’t either. Stop relegating the muffin to a sad, shrink-wrapped corner of your local Starbucks-like and start giving it the respect it deserves.
Toss the dates in a small bowl with a teaspoon of baking soda, then pour the boiling water on top and let them sit for 15 minutes. Once they're nice and soft, mash em up with a potato masher until they turn into a gross-looking paste-like thing.
Beat the butter in a stand mixer on medium for 2-3 minutes, until it gets light and creamy.
Add in the sugar and beat it for 2-3 more minutes on medium.
Mix in the eggs one at a time, then the vanilla.
Whisk up a 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda, the baking powder, flour, and salt in a bowl.
Slowly mix in the dry ingredients and the date goo, alternating between them until both are all mixed in. Make sure you don't overmix it, too.
Fold in the untoasted coconut, then put the batter in a cupcake tin with some cupcake liners and sprinkle the toasted coconut on top. All you have to do to toast the coconut is throw it on the stove in a small pan on medium until it gets toasty and brown. Simple.
Throw 'em in the oven and bake for 45 minutes.
Let the muffins cool for 5 minutes, then take them out of the tin and let them sit on a cooling rack for another 15.