I’ve had the baking bug for a while so was glad when a work event required a cake. I still had some coconut frosting from the Pina Colada cake I made a while ago and coconut is generally one of my favourite foodstuffs on earth, so the time seemed right to try out a cake. When I think of coconut, I always remember the stupid old Bounty ads where a coconut falls from a tree and is perfectly bisected by a conveniently placed rock. Incidentally, I’m pretty sure that scene is impossible as the coconut shown is a dried brown one that wouldn’t be in a tree anyway. Anyway, back to the cake. Here ’tis.
Topped with a mini Bounty (because someone had brought in Celebrations). This is a coconut sponge filled with chocolate ganache and topped with coconut (and caramel, by accident) frosting. I used a Nigella recipe from this lovely blog as the base. The cake was really nice, quite balanced and generally well received by all present. However, the dark chocolate ganache was a bit too classy to recreate the flavour of a Bounty bar. I’d say for a truer flavour you should use 40-60% chocolate rather than 70%, which I went for.
For the cake
- 225g butter, softened
- 225g caster sugar
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 4 eggs
- 200g self-raising flour
- 25g cornflour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 50g desiccated coconut
- 150ml milk (I used Kallo Dairy Free, which is a milk substitute derived from coconuts)
For the filling
- 100g white chocolate
- 1/3 cup cream
- 150g good-quality dark chocolate (about 50% for a Bountier taste, 70% for something a little more sophisticated)
- 3/4 cup double cream
For the frosting
- 3oz cream cheese
- 1/4 cup butter
- 2tbsp coconut cream
- 3-6 cups icing sugar
- A couple of large handfuls of desiccated coconut
- Make sure your ingredients are at room temperature before you start. Get everything out of the fridge at least half an hour before you start.
- Boil the milk and pour over the desiccated coconut. Leave to cool.
- Grease two 20cm (8in) springform cake tins and line the bottoms with baking parchment.
- Preheat oven to 180C (160 fan)
- In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (about 1min with a hand blender)
- Mix in the vanilla until well combined
- Add the eggs one at a time and mix until thoroughly incorporated, adding a heaped spoonful of flour between each addition.
- Add the remaining dry ingredients and mix well.
- Give the coconut/milk mix a good stir, then add and stir through.
- Divide the batter between your prepared cake tins, making a dip in the centre to try and ensure a more level top, then bake for 20-30mins until the cake passes the skewer test.
- Leave to cool in the tins for 10mins, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely. I turn them upside-down, again to try and get the tops a bit more level.
- Prepare the ganache. I started with the white. Finely chop the white chocolate and put into a heatproof bowl. Don’t be lazy on this stage- if the chunks of chocolate are too large, they won’t melt and you’ll be in for a world of pain.
- Bring the 1/3 cup cream to the boil in a small saucepan. Immediately pour over the white chocolate and leave to stand for a minute.
- Slowly stir (with a silicon spatula, if you have one) until thoroughly combined.
- Do the same (in a separate bowl) with the dark chocolate.
- Once your cakes are completely cool, carefully cut them in half horizontally with a sharp knife or one of those clever cutting deelies that ensures you don’t make a hash of it. As you will see from my pics, I only halved one of my cakes as the other was too uneven for me to risk it.
- Place one of the bottom halves of cake on your serving platter, cut side up.
- Spoon a 2cmish annulus of white chocolate ganache around the edge of the cake. This will prevent the dark ganache from bleeding into your frosting. White chocolate and coconut is also a wonderful combination.
- Fill the centre with 1/3 of your dark chocolate ganache. I think it would be nice to have a couple of concentric rings of white and dark ganache as the two flavours are just lovely.
- Place your next layer of cake on top and repeat.
- Repeat again.
- Make up your frosting. Blend the cheese and butter together until smooth. Add icing sugar about 1 cup at a time until you have a thick, spreadable consistency. Thoroughly stir in the coconut cream. If it thins your frosting too much, add a little more sugar. Spread over the whole cake.
- Top with the desiccated coconut.
- Decorate with little Bounties, or reserve a couple of tablespoons of dark ganache and make little truffle decorations in the shape of coconuts.
I was so excited that I even (unconsciously) matched my outfit to the cake.