CAROLINA ALUMNI REVIEW 47
Fresh Coconut Cake
1 cup ( 2 sticks) butter, softened
2 cups sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup milk
▶ Heat the oven to 350 F. Grease and flour
2 9-inch round cake pans and set aside.
▶ In a large bowl, beat the softened butter
with a mixer at medium speed until creamy.
▶ Add the sugar and continue beating,
stopping to scrape down the bowl, until the
mixture is fluffy and fairly smooth.
▶ Add the eggs, one by one, beating each
time, until you have a thick, smooth batter.
▶ In a medium bowl, combine the flour,
baking powder and salt, and use a fork to
stir and mix them together well.
▶ Add about one-third of the flour mixture
to the batter and beat with a mixer at low
speed just until the flour disappears.
▶ Stir the vanilla into the milk, and add
about half the milk to the batter, beating
just until the batter is smooth.
▶ Continue beating as you add another third
of the flour mixture to the batter, followed by
the rest of the milk, and then the remaining
flour mixture, beating each time just until
the batter is very thick and smooth.
▶ Quickly scrape the batter into the
prepared cake pans, dividing it evenly, and
place them in the oven.
▶ Bake at 350 F for 25 to 30 minutes, until
the cakes are golden, spring back lightly
when touched in the center and begin to
pull away from the sides of the pan.
▶ Remove from the oven and cool the cakes
in the pans on wire racks or folded kitchen
towels for 10 minutes. Then turn out the
cakes onto wire racks or plates. Turn the
layers top side up to cool completely.
▶ Just before icing the cake, carefully slice
each layer in half, cutting horizontally, to
make 4 thin layers.
Fresh Coconut Icing
3 cups sugar
3 rounded tablespoons flour or cornstarch
1 cup fresh coconut juice, or plain water,
or a combination of the two
About 3 cups freshly grated coconut
or sweetened shredded coconut
▶ Combine the sugar and flour in a heavy
medium saucepan and stir with a fork to
mix them together well.
▶ Stir in the coconut juice or water and
place over medium heat. Cook, stirring
often, until the mixture comes to a gentle
boil. Continue to stir often as the sugar
dissolves and the mixture turns syrupy.
Cook for about 4 minutes at a gentle
boil and then stir in about 2 ¼ cups of
the freshly grated coconut. Cook about 2
minutes more, stirring gently as the icing
▶ Remove from the heat and let cool to
▶ To ice the cake, place 1 half-layer top side
down on a cake stand or serving plate, and
spread about one-fourth of the icing over
the cake. Repeat with the remaining
3 half-layers, with the fourth half-layer top
side up. Spread the icing to the edges and
let it cascade gently down the sides.
▶ Sprinkle the remaining ¾ cup of coconut
over the top of the cake, and pat gently to
help it adhere to the icing.
▶ The cake will be visible through the
translucent icing, looking as though it were
in a little ice palace.
▶ Let the cake stand at room temperature
for 2 to 3 hours or as long as overnight.
▶ Cover the cake well and store it in the
refrigerator if you will not be serving it within
a few hours. Simply let the cake return
to room temperature for 1 or 2 hours, to
release the strong chill. This cake mellows
and tastes even better the second day.
This recipe comes from
Southern Cakes: Sweet and Easy Recipes
for Everyday Celebrations
by Nancie McDermott.
Chronicle Books, 2007.
All rights reserved.