Cupcakes and Chlorophyll


"How do you come up with these ideas?!" A question I'm all too familiar with...  So when I introduced this cupcake and someone said "WHAT!?!  Why would you EVEN put spinach in a cupcake?"  Well... I wasn't surprised... :) But what can I say?  I may have discovered a new way for kids to eat their greens, and a sweet way of reducing bad breath and body odor!  Yup!   Now do I have your attention?   Keep reading to learn more...

So when I discovered mass amounts of spinach in my freezer I was looking for the next best things to do with it...   I often use frozen spinach in a variety of pasta and meat dished and even paired with coconut milk in rice or as a side dish to eat with roti.  So using some of that influence, and my cupcake sense, I concocted these Coconut Spinach Safton Cupcakes.

Chlorophyll is the green pigment in plants, that is used to absorb light and process carbon dioxide (CO2) and water (H2O) to carryout the process of photosynthesis. 

Equation: 6CO2 + 12H2O + Light = C6H12O6 + 6O2+ 6H2O
Image from: How Stuff Works

Photosynthesis is the process via which plants create sugar/ carbohydrates they can use as food.  Plants release oxyen as a byproduct of this cycle. But you knew this since grade/ primary school right? 

Moreover, you probably already know that green leafy vegetables are an excellent source of iron, calcium, potassium magnesium, vitamins B, C, E and K.  But did you know that the chlorophyll in the leaves of plants, especially that of spinach, are a powerful fighter against bad breath and body odor?! 

Chlorophyll does have some additional healing properties, but imagine my surprise when I stumbled upon this information and some readings on Nature's News and Web MD!  Eyes wide, I thought: " Did I just conjure up a cupcake that can help reduce bad breath!?!" o_0    Thinking about it now, it's no wonder that long ago in the West Indies people took "bush baths"...

Anyways, studies indicate that only 100 to 300 milligrams of chlorophyll everyday can combat the germs that cause bad breath and body odor.  Just one (1) ounce of raw spinach contains 300 to 600 milligrams of chlorophyll! There are mixed results on how much chlorophyll is actually left after a plant is heated (in this case, baked) but all schools agree that at least some is left as long as the leaves are still green, since that is what chlorophyll does.


So how did I get spinach in a cupcake?


Well, I let about 1/2 cup of  thawed spinach marinate in coconut milk, in a coconut cream cake batter  and added a little saffron which added a nice bright yellow to the mix and was a mild complement to the coconut flavor. I baked these cupcakes for about 20 minutes. Once cooled I topped this concoction with a coconut saffron frosting I whipped up, and piped it around an oreo cookie to resemble a sunflower, using the grass techniques I demonstrated in last year's Simply Spring Cupcakes presentation.

Note: This frosting contains no food coloring, the bright yellow is just the saffron!



Honestly, I enjoyed this cake, it's not one of my favorites by any means, but it did taste good. I only managed to convince one person to try it... He didn't like it... Though I have to admit I was pressed for time and did not reach out to as many people as I usually would to taste test before the post.  Nevertheless, if this cake were as gross as it may seem, I promise you,  I'd admit it. You can barely taste the spinach, you mostly get the coconut-y flavor, but you can definitely feel the texture of the wilted leaves which I have to admit is not very plesant if you bite into a pile of spinach.

Nonetheless, I think I might be on to something, and will definitely make this cake again, with a few changes: I want to try fresh instead of frozen spinach, and chop it finely and  add some coconut flakes or some type of nut to the batter, or as a topping, to give a little bite to the cake.

As always, I'd love to hear your comments, thoughts or suggestions on this experiment. Would you try this cake?

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