* 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
* 2 cups cake flour, sifted
* 1 teaspoon baking soda
* 3/4 teaspoon salt
* 1 1/3 cups sugar
* 3 eggs, room temperature
* 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
* 1 cup buttermilk
* 5 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted, then cooled
* 3 large egg yolks
* 1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk
* 1 1/4 cups packed light brown sugar
* 1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces, at room temperature
* 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1 bag (7 ounces) sweetened flaked coconut
* 1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped
To make cupcakes:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line regular muffin tins with muffin papers.
2. In a medium bowl, put the dry ingredients (cake flour, baking soda, and salt) and whisk to mix.
3. Cream the butter and sugar with an electric mixer in a large bowl on medium-high speed until pale yellow in color and fluffy.
4. Keeping the mixer running in the butter-sugar bowl, start adding eggs, one at a time, until blended well; then add vanilla.
5. Reduce the mixer to low speed and start adding the flour mixture, dividing into three steps with the buttermilk; first a third flour, then half buttermilk, third flour, half buttermilk, final third flour.
6. Finally drizzle in the cooled chocolate and mix until thoroughly combined.
7. Pour batter into paper cups in muffin tins about 3/4 full.
8. Put tins in preheated oven and bake in preheated oven at 350 for 18 to 20 minutes, making sure you turn the muffin tin halfway through the cooking time. Cupcakes are done when a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in the middle.
9. Remove muffin tins from oven and set on rack to cool for 5 minutes, then remove paper cups from muffin tins and place on rack to cool completely.
To make frosting:
1. In a saucepan, put egg yolks, evaporated milk, brown sugar, and butter over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture becomes thick, about 8 to 10 minutes.
3. Pour into a heat-resistant bowl and add vanilla, salt, coconut, and pecans, stirring gently to combine. Let cool at room temperature.
To assemble cupcakes:
1. Use a sharp knife and, from the top, remove a “core” of cupcake from the center, being sure you don't puncture the bottom.
2. Fill the core (hole) with frosting, then add frosting to top of cupcake. (Save the cupcake you remove and save to use as ice cream topping.)