Wednesday, May 26, 2010

coconut cake

I love coconut cake.
I'm gonna go ahead and say it's my very favorite cake to eat. 
I have it almost ever birthday that rolls around.
And what's not to love?  Sweet and creamy cake with an even sweeter frosting and contrast with the real coconut shavings that aren't too sugary....heaven.

Coconut Cake
Serves 8-12.
Adapted from Ina Garten.
3 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups sugar
6 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
4 ounces sweetened, shredded coconut
2 fresh coconuts
Recipe for Seven Minute Frosting

Preheat your oven to 350*.
Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl.  Set aside.
Cream the butter and sugar together in a large bowl.

Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition.
Add vanilla and almond extracts and beat well.

Add flour mixture and milk, alternating, beating after each addition.

Fold in the sweetened coconut.

Pour into two greased and floured 8" cake pans.

Bake for 45-55 minutes or until golden and a toothpick comes out cleanly.  Cool on a baking rack for 30 minutes, then turn the cakes out onto a baking rack to finish cooling.

Meanwhile, prep the coconuts.
Find the "eyes" of the coconut.  Place, eye-side up, in a bowl, lined with a kitchen towel.  Using a screwdriver and a hammer, open the eyes carefully.  Get your dad to do it!  :)

Once you have opened them, drain them into a clean bowl.  (You can use the coconut juice in the cake, substituting for some of the milk, or use it in the frosting, or just drink it!!)

Using the back of the hammer, pry apart the drained coconuts.  Doing this outside is easiest.

Break them apart.

Peel off the hard outer layer.  It should come off very easily.

Once you have finished this, you can grate the whole thing with a box grater.

You should have a nice, big pile!

Set aside.
Ice the cakes with a crumb coat, meaning just enough to seal in the crumbs, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Once set, dollop some more icing for the middle and stack the layers.

Frost the whole cake completely.

Carefully, press the freshly shredded coconut onto the sides and top of the cake and into the frosting.

Isn't it pretty??

And enjoy!

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