It is a sunny, slightly warm day here on the Cape, but cold weather is on its way again soon. I’m not quite ready for spring, though, I am still waiting for the BIG snow of the season. We did have a couple of snow falls of a couple of inches, but I would really love a good 10 to 12 inches. Snow is also great for the garden, and we are already planning what vegetable seeds to buy, along with starting another plot for a garden, so please pray that we get the big storm!
I recently had a birthday and was given one of my favorite desserts — a coconut cream trifle. I have served this in little glasses, and called it coconut cake in a glass — and it is truly divine. This recipe is a little complicated and time consuming, but I promise it is well worth the effort for any event or family gathering.
Coconut Cake in a Glass, or Coconut Cream Trifle
Coconut Cake In A Glass, Or Coconut Cream Trifle
First make the simple syrup:
- Bring water and sugar to a boil.
- Stir in the coconut, remove from the heat and let sit for about 30 minutes.
- Strain the liquid into a clean saucepan, bring to a boil and let cook until the mixture is slightly reduced, about 5 minutes.
- Let cool.
Then the custard:
- Bring milks to a simmer over low heat in a nonreactive saucepan.
- Whisk together the yolks, sugar, and cornstarch in a large bowl.
- Whisk in a small amount of the milk mixture to the egg mixture to temper the eggs, then slowly whisk in the rest until smooth.
- Return mixture to the pot over medium heat, and bring to a boil, whisking constantly, until thickened.
- Scrape mixture into a bowl, and whisk in the rum and vanilla extract. Let cool to room temperature, then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold.
Now the cake:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Generously butter and flour 2 (9″by 2″) cake pans and line bottoms with parchment paper.
- Whisk together the milk, egg whites, vanilla in a medium bowl.
- In the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
- With mixer running at low speed, add the butter, one piece at a time, and continue beating until mixture resembles moist crumbs.
- Add all but 1/2 cup of milk mixture to crumbs and beat at medium speed until the mixture is pale and fluffy, about 1 1/2 minutes.
- With mixer on low speed, add remaining milk mixture, increase speed to medium and beat 30 seconds more.
- Scrape sides of bowl and mix for another 20 seconds.
- Divide batter between the 2 pans and smooth tops with a spatula.
- Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few crumbs attached, about 22 to 24 minutes.
- Cool for 10 minutes on a rack, then invert onto the rack, removing the parchment. Let cool completely.
- Toast the 1 cup of coconut until golden for topping.
- Whip the 1 1/2 cups of cream, and fold 2/3 of it into the cooled custard for the filling between layers of cake, reserving the last 1/3 for the final layer of the dessert.
- Slice each cake into 2 layers, brush with the simple syrup, and then chunk up into bite size pieces.
- You can make these either individually in glasses, or for a crowd in a large glass bowl.
- Put a layer of cake pieces in the bottom of your container, then a layer of the custard mixture, continuing until your container is full, final layer being the last 1/3 of the whipped cream, and sprinkle with the toasted coconut.
- This is most delicious if you refrigerate it for a couple of hours so the flavors meld.