Coconut Cake (ibbibud)

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    Coconut Cake

    Note: This recipe was originally submitted on the Baking Circle by ibbibud (last updated 3/22/2010). It was resubmitted to the Baking Circle by Naughtysquirrel on August 17, 2021 at 3:12 p.m.) It did not initially get transferred to Nebraska Kitchen, but I found a printed copy in a pile of recipes I was sorting.

    Ibbibud states: I found this cake recipe in the newspaper. It is everything a coconut cake should be!

    1 cup (2 sticks) butter at room temperature
    2 cups sugar
    3 cups all-purpose flour
    4 tsp. baking powder
    1/2 tsp. kosher salt
    1/4 cup whole milk
    1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk (available in the Asian section of most supermarkets, or see notes)
    1/4 cup coconut cream (such as Coco Lopez)
    1 tsp. vanilla extract
    8 large egg whites

    Whipped cream filling (recipe follows)
    Frosting (recipe follows)
    3-4 cups unsweetened flaked coconut for decorating

    Place an oven rack in the bottom third of the oven and another in the top third of the oven. Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter three 9-inch cake pans, then line each with a parchment round. Butter the paper and dust the pans with flour; knock out excess.

    Using an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Use a rubber spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl.

    In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and salt to blend. In a small bowl, stir together the milk, coconut milk and coconut cream until smooth. Add the flour mixture in three increments, alternating with the milk mixture in two increments, starting and ending with the flour mixture. After each addition, mix at low speed just to combine the ingredients. Stir in the vanilla.

    Using an electric mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the egg whites on high speed until stiff peaks form. Gently fold the egg whites into the batter until evenly blended. Divide the cake batter evenly among the prepared cake pans. Set two layer on the top rack and the third on the lower rack. Stagger the cake layers on the oven racks so that no layer is directly over another.

    Bake for 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cakes comes our clean. Monitor the layers carefully for doneness; each may be done at a different time. Remove from the oven and let cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then unmold onto wire racks to cool completely.

    Make Whipped Cream Filling:
    Using an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat 1 cup cold heavy whipping cream on high speed until soft peaks form Beat in 2 tablespoons coconut cream (such as Coco Lopez) and 1/2 cup grated fresh coconut (optional). Set aside

    Make Frosting:
    Whisk 2 large egg whites, 1 1/2 cups sugar, 1/3 cup cold water, 1/4 tsp. cream of tartar and 1/4 tsp. kosher salt in a large stainless-steel bowl until thoroughly combined. Place the bowl over a saucepan filled with 2 inches of barely simmering water. Using a hand beater or handheld electric mixer, continue beating the egg white mixture for 4 minutes. Add 1/2 cup mini-marshmallows in two increments while continuing to beat. Wait until the first batch of marshmallows has melted before adding the second. Continue beating for 2 to 3 minutes more, until stiff peaks form. Remove from the heat, stir in the vanilla [transcriber's note: the recipe does not state how much vanilla] and continue beating until the frosting is thick enough to spread.

    To Assemble the Cake:
    Stack one cake layer on a serving plate and spread the top with half of the whipped cream filling. Repeat with a second layer. Stack the final cake layer on top of the first two and cover the cake's top and sides with the frosting. Sprinkle the coconut on the top and sides of cake.

    Cover the cake loosely with plastic wrap and store for 1 day at room temperature or up to 3 days in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature before serving. Makes 8-10 servings.

    Notes: It's challenging to press coconut into the sides of the cake. When pressing the coconut in, the icing invariably sticks to my fingers and mars the frosting's finish. I've discovered that throwing small handfuls of coconut toward the side of the cake makes it adhere quite well--a messy but effective technique for creating a gorgeous cake.

    For those who want to follow Aunt Molly's original recipe, here are her directions for extracting coconut meat and liquid from a fresh coconut: First, buy a fresh coconut. To select the best one, shake it to listen for a lot of milk inside. Prepare the coconut by first making a hole or two in one end with a hammer and ice pick. Stand the coconut up over a small bowl or glass measuring cup to catch the milk as it drains out. Next, crack the hard outer shell with a hammer, then pry off the pieces. The inner white coconut meat can then be grated [with a handheld Microplane grater}. Refrigerate both the milk and grated coconut until ready to use.

    PER SERVING: Calories 1,090 (50% fat) Fat 62 g (46 g saturated fat) Cholesterol 94 mg Sodium 272 mg Fiber6 g Carbohydrates 125 g Protein 12 g

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    Darn. Wish I'd had this in April. I made a My wife wanted a coconut cake for her birthday. It's surprisingly hard to find one that actually has coconut. I forget where I found the recipe I made.

    The cake I made had me add the shredded coconut to the frosting. It's easier than pressing it into the side but doesn't give the same look. I will also toast it next time.


    Aaron--King Arthur also has a wonderful coconut cake that appeared in an issue of their now defunct magazine, Sift. It may be on their website. I baked it some years back--about the time the Baking Circle was being closed down--for our department chair's birthday.

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