My mom loves coconut. The only problem is, no one else in our family does. I've gradually started to like it more since I tried my first Samoa and realized it wasn't half bad, but I would never order anything coconut off a menu. I've also never made anything coconut. At christmas she makes macaroons, I make meringues. But, Friday was her birthday so I decided I'd give a coconut recipe a try. This recipe was a disaster from beginning to end in the making. I was rushing to get it done and in turn destroyed two batches of lemon curd, which was supposed to be the filling (that's a lot of lemons and eggs!). Luckily, the icing I chose for the outside of the cake was amazing and the batch turned out to be plenty to frost the whole cake. I liked the final product so much I won't be trying this recipe with lemon curd, it was perfect how it was. Because the original recipe calls for it, I'm sure it's even better with it. I think I'm just fed up with lemon curd for now, but that doesn't mean you all shouldn't give it a try! My only suggestion would be to put parchment down in the bottom of the pans before pouring the batter in. Not doing this contributed to part two of my disaster: One of the layers split in two.
Like I said before, no one in my family likes coconut, but everyone tried this cake and liked it. I didn't add the extra coconut between the layers so the lemon flavor came through much more which made it more appealing to everyone. My mom said she thought it would've been even better with it, though, so if you like coconut, add it. I ended up taking these pictures three days after I made it and after it had been put in the fridge so they don't do the cake justice. Trust me on this though, this recipe has made me like coconut even more than when I tried the Samoa (and it's pretty hard to beat Girl Scout Cookies). I thought it was much better before going in the fridge so I would recommend covering it and leaving it out to help it stay moist.
Coconut Cake with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting
Recipe from The Foster's Market Cookbook
Ingredients for the cake:
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
12 (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 3/4 cup sugar
6 large eggs, separated
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup canned coconut cream (such as Coco Lopez)
1 cup sweetened flaked coconut
Ingredients for the frosting:
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
Two 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened
5 cups confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoons grated lemon zest
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups sweetened flaked coconut
*This is a great recipe for just plain cream cheese frosting too if you leave out the coconut. It also can be made into a fruit cream cheese frosting with the addition of 1 cup fresh berries. YUM!
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
- Grease and lightly flour two 9-inch cake pans and set aside (I used 3 pans)
- Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl and stir to mix. Set aside.
- Cream together the butter and sugar in a separate bowl with an electric mixer.
- Add the egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition until mixture is light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and stir by hand to mix well.
- Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture, alternating with the buttermilk and coconut cream. Stir until all the dry ingredients are moist and blended. Do not overmix.
- With an electric mixer whip the egg whites in a separate bowl 2 to 3 minutes, until soft peaks form. Gently fold the egg whites into the cake batter.
- Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans and bake 40-45 minutes (If you use more pans, like I did, decrease this time by about 10 minutes. Remove from oven when cakes are firm to the touch and a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven and cool the cakes 10 to 15 minutes in the pans. Remove from the pans and continue to cool on a baking rack.
- Place the butter and cream cheese in a bowl and cream together with an electric mixer until light and smooth.
- Add the confectioner's sugar, 1 cup at a time, beating well after each addition until smooth.
- Add the orange zest and vanilla and continue to mix on high speed about 1 minute to make the frosting light and fluffy.
- Add 2 cups sweetened falked cocnut and stir until well blended.
- Once the cakes have cooled completely, use a long, serrated knife to slice off the top rounded potion of each cake to make a flat, even surface. Discard trimmings.
- Place one layer cut side down on a cake plate. Spread generously with icing and sprinkle cocnut over layer. Continue with next layer and spread top and sides of cake with frosting.