Coconut cake

This is my version of a coconut cake from the American South. I love the sweet and nutty flavour of coconut. I cook with coconut milk a lot – at work we get in fresh ones, puréeing the flesh with water and straining to make a thick cream. This takes patience, though, as it does take quite a lot of work. Coconut milk from a tin will do nicely in this recipe.

Follow the directions for the chocolate cake in order to make the sponge, but this time keep it completely plain without the addition of chocolate.

For the icing

450g/141/2oz icing sugar
200ml/7fl oz coconut milk
A little lemon juice
2 tbsp dessicated coconut, lightly toasted in the oven

First make the sponges, as instructed left, and allow to cool. Now sieve the icing sugar into a bowl and pour over the coconut milk, stirring constantly as you do so until it is thick but can still just drop from a spoon. If the icing appears a little watery, add a little more icing sugar, and finish with a squeeze of lemon juice. Spread over the base of two cakes and sandwich together.

Taking the third cooked cake, cut out a circle the size of a wine glass in the centre and place on the top cake, slice the remaining outer rim into triangles and arrange over the top. Sprinkle over the dessicated coconut and serve.

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