Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Slowly but surely, I'm making changes to my blog. A new banner, you can now subscribe to new posts, and google translator (for you Flo!). I plan to change up the images, in the banner, every season. What do you think?

To celebrate that I finally made some changes, I made a very labour intensive cake! I guess it's not too bad but, if you make it, set aside a good amount of time....like an entire day (probably just me). It's worth it though. Delicious.

Coconut Cream Cake
1 1/3 cups fresh shredded coconut*
* to make shredded coconut, pierce softest eye with metal skewer (I used my awl) and drain out liquid. Bake whole coconut on rimmed baking sheet in a 400f/200c oven for 15 minutes. Remove from oven. Break shell with hammer (loved this bit). Using point of a very sharp and strong knife, pry out flesh. Pare off husk and cut into 2-3 inch pieces. Using a vegetable peeler shave edges off coconut. Arrange in a single layer on a wire rack until dry and slightly cured, about 24 hours.

1/2 cup softened unsalted butter
1 1/3 cups sugar
3 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 1/3 cups sifted cake and pastry flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup milk

Coconut pastry cream:
2 cups milk
2 eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons cornstarch
4 teaspoons butter
1/2 teaspoon coconut extract

1/2 cup softened unsalted butter
2 1/2 cups icing sugar
1/3 cup whipping cream

Ok, here we go....
Grease sides of two 8" round cake pans, and line bottoms with parchment paper. Set aside.
To make the cake: In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar together until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, then vanilla. In another bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Stir dry mix into butter mixture alternately with milk, making three additions of dry ingredients and two of milk. Divide batter between cake pans, spreading evenly. Tap pans gently on work surface to remove any air bubbles.
Bake in centre of oven at 350f/180c for about 25 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in centre, comes out clean. Let cool for 10 minutes in pans, then turn out onto wire racks to cool completely.

Coconut Pastry Cream: in a saucepan, heat milk until bubbles form around the edge. Meanwhile, in a bowl whisk together eggs, sugar, flour and cornstarch until smooth. Gradually add milk. Return to saucepan over medium heat, whisking, until just bubbly, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat and simmer gently, whisking all the while, until thick enough to mound on spoon, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in butter and coconut extract. Scrape into bowl and cover with plastic wrap (directly on surface of cream). Refrigerate until firm, about 3 hours.

Icing: in a bowl, beat butter until fluffy. Alternately beat in sugar and cream, making 3 additions of sugar and two of cream.

To assemble: Cut cakes in half, horizontally (this made me nervous!). Place one bottom half and plate and spread with one third of the pastry cream. Top with one top half, then spread half the remaining cream on top. Top with remaining top half layer, and spread with remaining cream. Top with remaining bottom half, bottom side up!
Spread a thin coat of icing all over top and sides of layered cake. Refrigerate until firm, about 30 minutes. Spread with remaining icing. Press small handfuls of coconut onto icing to cover cake, gathering and reapplying any that doesn't adhere.

There it is. If you make this cake, please let me know how it turns out!

By the way, I did a guest post today over at Good Good. There are several guest posts by a variety of bloggers and it's all about summer. Ahh, summer.

Thanks for stopping by! Have a great day. Back soon.


Flo said...

Oh... Thanks... I understand every things... So fine !
And I love your new banner... So spring !
I'm not very in love with coconut... But I will try the small rabbit.. And I will eat first the ears... ;-)
Bises, Flo

the southern hostess said...

I love the new banner. It looks great!
Coconut cake is definitely in my top 5 favorite desserts. Yours looks perfect!

Mary Hudson said...

The changes look great — and that cake looks amazing! I love coconut and am so impressed that you grated it fresh (I already know that I would probably never do that)

Amanda said...

sounds yummy! i'd've never thought to shred my own coconut... now i'm going to have to try! :D

Splenderosa said...

Love what you've done with your blog design. I think changing it up each season will keep everyone interested to see what you're doing! Great idea!! The cake? Well, I'll just wait for one of my friends to make it & bring to my next party. xx's

Jenn said...

This cake looks absolutely worth the effort! Coconut cream is soooo yummy, and I find it relaxing to make a cake every once in a while.

ps. I really like your new banner :)

Razmataz said...

Oh my goodness. This is my all time favourite cake. I must save this recipe for Easter, although I may cop out and buy shredded coconut.

misslemonie said...

The banner is beautiful... and so is the cake! Thanx for the inspiration.

style-for-style said...

ooo delicious!

mise said...

The blog is looking great; I love the delicate luminosity of the banner, so characteristic of your work.

shellie said...

so you know im so going to try this when i feel better....i love coconut diner cake and tried to make a coconut cake last year with seven minute icing which was an abysmal failure with a capital F. I love the new banner. I love pink houses...my husband wont let me paint our house pink.

Lily from Birch + Bird said...

Your blog is looking lovely! I like the idea of changing the banner pictures seasonally too. This cake looks like heaven to me! Thanks for sharing :)

Angela Steyn said...

Love the new look! And that cake... yum, yum, yum in my tum!

Angela x

dahlhaus said...

Looks amazing Janis- do you think toasting the coconut would work too?

Miss Snow said...

Oh my! I have just discovered your lovely blog and now you're making me hungry :) I wonder if this would work with gluten free flour? Must give it a try sometime xx

jenna ♥ a little blue said...

im a newbie to your blog, but love the header :)

and also... i don't like coconut at all, but the cake looks delicious!

Pen and Paperie said...

the new banner is so beautiful. it, in fact, looks as delicious as your cake.
which brings me to my second point - normally i heartily dislike coconut in things, but i love fresh coconut. that this has real fresh coconut in it makes me think it may win me over. and your pictures look good enough to eat themselves!

red ticking said...

a m a z i n g... this looks incredible...xoxo

gbf said...

oh heaven this cake sounds/looks delicious. loving your new pretty header too! dayle

dm designs said...

YUM!!! :) Looks amazing! I love your new banner too ~ great timing because ~ I actually just gave you the STYLISH BLOGGER AWARD :) http://danimariedesigns.blogspot.com/2011/04/awards.html

Maggy said...

I love the way shredded coconut takes a cake from normal to looking not only delicious, but delicate and pretty. It looks fabulous :)

Pinecone Camp said...

Thanks for all the great comments!
Flo, I'm happy you can read my blog now ;) I don't know why I didn't do this earlier!
Dalhaus, absolutely toast your coconut. I bet it would be delicious!
DaniMarie, thanks for the award!
Jenna, I know heaps of people that are not coconut lovers, so just skip that bit. Smashing a coconut is fun though ;)

Pinecone said...

It looks wonderful and the photos are amazing!!

nesting journal said...

not quite sure what to do with how hunrgy this puffy cake has made me. call it a bit of sleep deprivation but i could easily sink my teeth in this bad boy and then set up sleepy times on the pillowy goodness. btw looooove the new fresh spring look of the banner. new colors of font too? lovin it.

jennifer@nicolejanehome said...

I LOVE the new banner! It looks fantastic. But the cake looks even BETTER!!!

Jen said...

People either love coconut or hate it but girl, I LOVE it!!! This looks soo good!!

Happy Thursday Darling! xo

c and d said...

you are amazing! how you make baking so beautiful and effortless is truly admirable. thanks for the tip on baking the whole coconut first! almost lost a limb the last time i made coconut cupcakes...

c and d said...

p.s. love the blog facelift - feels so fresh!

jackie said...

love the new banner and the coconut action is pretty awesome, too.

Melanie said...

Alright, I guess I will HAVE to make this because of my chocolate fast. Too bad it doesn't look that good. Just kidding.

S. Bohde said...

Made this cake - turned out delicious! Thanks for a great recipe. The frosting was a little bit drippy, though. Any suggestions for how to fix that?

Here's a picture of the final product: http://bit.ly/fEAyBS