Coconut, pineapple and rum... is there a more heavenly combination in the summer? Pina coladas remind me of sunshine, lying on the beach, impromptu drinks made with ice cream at BBQs and tiki bars. 

If you can't indulge in the cocktail, have a go at these cakes because they're almost as good as the real thing!

Adapted from How Sweet It Is (June 2010)
Makes 20 fairy cakes/cupcakes (and 6 mini ones)
Cooking time: 20-25 minutes

200g granulated sugar
110g butter
2 medium eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon coconut extract (or essence which is easier to find)
200g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup crushed pineapple pieces (and a splash of juice if you have it, not essential though)
1/4 cup dessicated coconut
1/4 cup / 60ml coconut rum (I used Cocobay but Malibu would also work)

For the icing:
230g butter, softened
900g - 1kg icing sugar
1/4 cup / 60ml coconut rum
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 180 C (350 F) and line a baking tray with cake cases.

2. Put the butter, sugar, and eggs in a large bowl and cream together until fluffy. Add vanilla and coconut extracts and mix until combined.

3. Combine the flour and baking powder in a separate bowl. Add half of the dry ingredients to the wet mixture, mixing until just combined. 

4. Add the crushed pineapple pieces (and juice if you included it). Once mixed, add the remaining dry ingredients. 

5. Lastly it's coconut time! Add the coconut rum and fold in the dessicated coconut.

6. Pour the batter into cake cases and bake for 20-25 minutes or until a light golden colour and the tops are springy. Let cool completely, then you can ice them if preferred. The icing tastes a lot of coconut rum, but the cakes are delicious without it as well!

7. Cream the butter until smooth. Gradually add icing sugar, alternating with rum and vanilla, until desired consistency is reached. If the icing is too runny you will have to add more sugar, or start again and use less liquid. Pipe over the tops of the cakes, and top with more dessicated coconut, pineapple pieces, or both!
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