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The Tuesday Treat: Coconut-Pineapple Layer Cake

For an explanation of The Tuesday Treat, see here.



Coconut-Pineapple Layer Cake, adapted long ago from Gourmet magazine

Cold and clear here lately, and I am lapping it up with the proverbial silver spoon but the beautiful days also create in me a bit of wistfulness for summer – and so I’ve been thinking of this cake. What could be more summery than coconut and pineapple? Not much. This is a perfect cake to beat the winter doldrums, and the ingredients couldn’t be more available regardless of season.

For cake layers
2 1/3 cups cake flour (not self-rising)
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
5 large eggs, beaten lightly

For filling
a 28-ounce can crushed pineapple in unsweetened juice
1 tablespoon cornstarch
a rounded 1/4 cup sugar

For frosting
2 2/3 cups sweetened flaked coconut (a 7-ounce bag), toasted golden
and cooled
1 carton heavy cream, whipped

Make cake layers:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line bottoms of 2 buttered 9- by2-inch round cake pans with rounds of wax paper. Dust pans with flour, knocking out excess.

Into a bowl sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. In a glass measuring cup stir together milk and vanilla. In a bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed cream butter 1 minute and add sugar in a steady stream, beating until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Beat in eggs, a little at a time, beating well after each addition, until pale and fluffy. Add the dry mixture, alternating with the milk in 3 additions.

Divide batter between cake pans and bake about 35 minutes, until lightly golden. Remove from oven and turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.

Meanwhile, in a heavy saucepan over medium heat, whisk the pineapple, sugar, and cornstarch together until thick. Cook a few minutes then remove from heat and cool completely.

To assemble:
Whip the cream until soft peaks form. Spread the pineapple on one cake layer and top with about 1/3 cup of of the whipped cream. Place the other cake layer on top; cover completely with the rest of the whipped cream. Scatter toasted coconut on top and sides of cake. Refrigerate for about 15 minutes (or longer) before serving.



One Comment

  1. Worth a trip to the library, or perhaps browsing online – see also the April 2003 edition of Bon Apetite for great layer cakes. It is one of the few magazines that escaped recycling and was saved to the cookbook shelf! Thinking of turning your Coconut recipe into cupcakes for an upcoming party – maybe a small dallop of the filling in the top center of each cup before baking, then frost over the surprise…..yum!

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