Last year one of my colleagues, a lovely speech and language therapist, gave me this Christmas cookbook. It was a lovely surprise and a perfect gift, and it has sat for a year on my bookshelf doing very little. I am going through a baking frenzy at the moment, spurred on by the cold weather and a desire to improve my baking skills and repertoire. It being December, the only real option is Christmas related bakery.
I sat down on Thursday evening and flipped through the whole book. I picked seven recipes and I thought I would start with chocolate and coconut layer cake. I have never attempted to make anything like this before so it seemed like a challenge. The first hurdle was finding a Swiss roll tin (25 x 38 cm). I did not even know they existed. So I did a little Google search and found out I could buy one in Lakeland. However, that never happened and I ended up using a (25 x 32 cm) baking tray which seems to be just fine.
This was the initial result.
My husband’s verdict “underwhelming but I bet it tastes nice”
It sat in the fridge overnight and the icing set and in the morning I decided to cut off the sides to make it look a little bit more like the cake, it thought it was supposed to look like, and to fit a tupperware container.
My husband to this to work to share with his work colleagues. Verdict – delicious!
Chocolate and coconut layer cake
40g self-raising flour
6 large eggs, separated
200g golden caster sugar
220g dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids), melted
Preheat the oven to 180oC/160oC (fan)/gas mark 4.
Lightly grease a Swiss roll tin (25 x 38 cm) and line with parchment paper
Sift the flours into a bowl and set aside.
In another bowl, beat the egg yolks and half the sugar together until the mixture is pale and has a ribbon-like texture. Pour in the melted chocolate and gently fold it in with a spatula.
In a clean bowl beat the egg whites and remaining sugar together until the mixture is shiny and reaches medium peaks. Fold a third of the mixture into the chocolate and egg yolk mixture.
Add the flours and gently fold in with a spatula.
Add the remaining egg white mixture and fold gently again. Be careful not to knock out too much of the air from the egg whites.
Pour this mixture into the tin and spread out evenly.
Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 10 – 12 minutes, until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Leave in its tin for about 5 minutes, then remove and transfer the cake (including the paper) on to a wire rack to cool completely.
Coconut and White Chocolate Icing
90g unsalted butter, at room temperature
200g icing sugar, sifted
80g desiccated coconut
50ml coconut milk
100g white chocolate, melted and cooled
Place the butter, icing sugar, desiccated coconut and coconut milk in a bowl. With an electric mixer, beat on a low/medium speed until the mixture is smooth. Add the white chocolate and beat for a further 30 seconds.
To assemble, slice the sponge into 4 equal rectangles. Placing a layer of coconut icing between each slice of cake, stack to make a rectangular layer cake.