Sunday, January 14, 2018

Winter Wonderland Cake

Winter Wonderland Cake
Winter Wonderland Cake

Winter Wonderland Cake
I took Cook's Illustrated White Layer Cake recipe (link below) and turned it into a Coconut Layer Cake by replacing the Whole Milk to canned Coconut Milk, and used Coconut Extract in place of Almond Extract. The Coconut Frosting is adapted from, The Complete America's Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook 2001-2010 (pgs. 498-99). This cake is light and moist and has a tender crumb. The coconut taste is divine and the dessicated coconut all over the cake makes it a coconut lovers dream cake. To give the cake a Winter Wonderland look, I made White Trees using ice cream cones and covered them with frosting, and then rolled them in Wilton White Sparkling Sugar Sprinkles and Wilton White Sugar Pearls Sprinkles. I read about this DIY on The Cake Blog (link below) and wanted to try it. If you love coconut as much as I do, you gotta make this recipe! See recipe and directions below.

First slice goes to the baker, me! ;)

2 1/4 cups King Arthur Cake Flour, plus more for the cake pans

1 cup Coconut Milk, canned, room temperature

6 Large Egg Whites, room temperature

2 teaspoons Coconut Extract

1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

1 3/4 cups Granulated Sugar

4 teaspoons Baking Powder

1 teaspoon Coarse Salt

1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) Unsalted Butter, softened and cut into 12 pieces

Winter Wonderland Cake

Winter Wonderland Cake

Adjust oven rack to the middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees.

Grease 2 9-inch round cake pans, line with parchment paper and grease and sprinkle with cake flour.

Tap on counter and remove excess cake flour.

Whisk coconut milk, egg whites, coconut and vanilla extracts together in a medium sized bowl.

In a mixer with paddle attachment, mix cake flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt on low speed until combined, about 1 minute.

Increase speed to medium, beat butter into the flour mixture, a couple of pieces at a time, about 1 minute.

Continue to beat the mixture until it resembles moist crumbs, about 1 minute.

Beat in all but 1/2 cup of the coconut milk mixture, then increase speed to medium and beat until smooth, light and fluffy, about 1-2 minutes.

Reduce mixer speed to low and slowly add remaining coconut milk mixture until batter is combined, about 1 minute.

Close-up of my slice

Winter Wonderland Cake beauty!
Add batter into the prepared pans, smooth tops with spatula, and lightly tap the pans against the countertop two to four times to settle the batter.

Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 23 to 25 minutes. My cake was done in 25 minutes.

Ovens vary so check the cake at 23 minutes or earlier and adjust baking time accordingly.

Cool cakes in pans for 10 minutes. Run a small knife around the edge of the cakes, then flip them carefully onto a wire rack.

Peel off the parchment paper, flip the cakes right side up, and cool completely.

Cover with plastic wrap and chill in fridge overnight or wait at least 2 hours if frosting the same day.

If you chill the cake overnight as I did, it will be easier to frost and not be as crumbly and the flavors develop more as well.

Pretty White Trees made from ice cream cones

Cake is frosted and ready to cover with the dessicated coconut

Coconut Frosting
2 tablespoons Heavy Cream

1 teaspoon Coconut Extract

1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

1/2 teaspoon Coarse Salt

2 sticks (16 tablespoons) Unsalted Butter, softened and cut into pieces

1/4 cup Coconut Milk, canned

3 cups Confectioners/Powdered Sugar

Shredded or Dessicated Coconut (however much you wish over frosting and in between the cake layers). I used dessicated coconut.

I used King Arthur brand Cake Flour

Iberia Coconut Milk

In a small bowl, stir the cream, coconut and vanilla extracts, and salt together.

In a mixer with paddle attachment, beat butter and coconut milk on medium-high speed until smooth, about 30-45 seconds.

Reduce mixer speed to medium-low and gradually beat in confectioners/powdered sugar, then continue to beat until smooth, about 3 minutes.

Beat in the cream mixture. Increase mixer speed to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy, about 4-5 minutes.

Winter Trees

3 Ice Cream Cones

Coconut Frosting

Wilton White Sparkling Sugar Sprinkles and Wilton White Sugar Pearls Sprinkles.

Ice Cream Cones will become White Winter Trees

Hold 1 cone inside your index finger and with a small spatula frost cone rotating it with your finger.

Roll each frosted cone in a large bowl with sprinkles. Cover completely.

Carefully place on a cutting board, baking sheet, or flat surface to set until you frost cake.

Dessicated Coconut I purchased for this recipe

Frost Cake
Line edges of cake platter or cake turntable with strips of parchment paper to keep platter edges clean as you frost cake.

I use a cake turntable.

If you wish, you may slice off the tops of the cake layers with a serrated knife before frosting.

I never do since my cakes bake pretty evenly on top.

Pic of dessicated coconut
Place one of the cake layers on the platter/cake turntable top side down. Spread desired frosting over the cake, right to the edges.

Place other cake layer top side down and press lightly to adhere.

Frost the cake with remaining frosting. Cover the entire cake with coconut flakes/dessicated coconut (I used dessicated coconut).

Top the cake carefully placing each winter white tree and then add extra coconut flakes/dessicated coconut around the trees to make it look snowy.

If desired add more coconut on your cake platter all along the bottom of the cake.

For the Cook's Illustrated White Layer Cake recipe, visit Epicurious:

For the DIY Sparkling Christmas Trees Tutorial, visit The Cake Blog:


-Sophia/Two Frys

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