Showing posts with label coconut milk. Show all posts
Showing posts with label coconut milk. Show all posts

Friday, April 26, 2013

Coconut buns + a TV show disappointment

Coconut buns / Pãezinhos de coco

I waited months for the fifth season of “Mad Men” to arrive on Netflix but after watching all the episodes I did not like it much. :/

* spoilers *

I hated the fate given to two of my favorite characters, Joan and Lane, and Don Draper doesn’t seem to be the interesting character he once was – at least Pete and Peggy had great finales. Seasons 1 through 4 are such favorites of mine, I hope season 6 gets back on track again. Have you watched season 5? Did you like it?

* end of spoilers *

If “Mad Men” was a disappointment to me I can’t say the same about these buns: they are super tender and delicious both on their own and with some raspberry jam; the recipes from "Baking by Flavor" never let me down.

Coconut buns
slightly adapted from the always delicious and wonderful Baking by Flavor

2 ¼ teaspoons dried yeast
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons warm water
1 large egg
½ tablespoon vanilla extract
¼ cup sour cream*
¼ cup coconut milk
2 cups + 2 tablespoons (300g) all purpose flour, divided use
¼ teaspoon table salt
¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 sweetened (33g) shredded coconut
½ cup (1 stick/113g) unsalted butter, softened and cut into chunks

For assembling the buns:
1 egg, beaten with a fork, for brushing the rolls
about ¼ cup sweetened shredded coconut, for sprinkling over the rolls

In the large bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the hook attachment mix the yeast, ½ teaspoon of the sugar and warm water. Let stand for about 5 minutes or until foamy. Add the egg, vanilla, remaining sugar, sour cream and coconut milk and stir to combine. Add 2 cups of the flour, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon and coconut and mix at medium-low speed until a dough forms. Gradually add the butter, mixing until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes – if the dough is too sticky, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of flour, but be aware that this is a soft dough. Transfer to a lightly buttered large bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature for 1 hour. Refrigerate for 4-5 hours or overnight.
Butter a 20x30cm (12x8in) baking pan. Set aside.
Remove the dough from the fridge and transfer to a lightly floured surface. Knead 3-4 four times, then divide into 9 equal portions. Roll each into a ball by cupping your hand and pushing dough against work surface as you roll in a circular motion. Arrange rolls 2.5cm (1in) apart onto prepared pan and cover with a clean kitchen towel. Let proof until doubled in size, about 2 hours. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F.
Brush the rolls with the egg wash and sprinkle with the coconut. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until rolls are golden brown. Serve warm or at room temperature.

*homemade sour cream: to make 1 cup of sour cream, mix 1 cup (240ml) heavy cream with 2-3 teaspoons lemon juice in a bowl. Whisk until it starts to thicken. Cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature for 1 hour or until thicker (I usually leave mine on the counter overnight – except on very warm nights – and it turns out thick and silky in the following morning; refrigerate for a creamier texture)

Makes 9

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Lime coconut cake

Lime coconut cake / Bolo de coco e limão

If I obsess over movies, TV shows and music things wouldn’t be different with food: certain flavors and dishes get my attention from time to time and I find it hard to resist them.

After baking those delicious lime coconut cookies – which looked so cute, by the way – I wanted to make something else with those flavors and this cake was the perfect choice: very tender, with a nice hint of citrus and a delicious coconut topping (I’m a complete sucker for toasted coconut). As a bonus, the recipe comes from a magazine I believe many of us miss, but luckily for us its website is very, very rich.

Lime coconut cake
slightly adapted from the oh, so beautiful and missed Gourmet mag

1 cup (100g) sweetened flaked coconut
½ cup (113g/1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 ¼ cups (250g) granulated sugar
finely grated zest of 2 large limes
2 large eggs
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ¾ cups (245g) self-rising flour*
½ cup (120ml) coconut milk
¼ cup (60ml) whole milk
¼ cup (60ml) fresh lime juice, divided
1 cup (140g) confectioners’ sugar
½ tablespoon rum (optional)

Preheat oven to 180°/350°F with rack in middle. Generously butter a 22x5cm (9x2in) round cake pan and line bottom with a round of parchment paper. Butter paper as well.
Toast coconut in a small baking pan in oven, stirring once or twice, until golden, about 6 minutes. Cool. Leave oven on.
Beat together butter, granulated sugar, and zest with an electric mixer until fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time, followed by the vanilla. Stir together flour and ½ cup (50g) of the coconut (reserve remainder for topping). Stir together coconut milk, milk and 2 tablespoons of the lime juice. At low speed, mix flour and milk mixtures into egg mixture alternately in batches, beginning and ending with flour.
Spoon batter into pan and smooth top. Bake until golden and a wooden pick inserted into center comes out clean, 40-45 minutes. Cool to warm, then turn out of pan and discard parchment.
Sift the confectioners’ sugar into a small bowl, then whisk in remaining 2 tablespoons lime juice, and rum (if using) and pour over cake. Sprinkle with remaining coconut.

* instead of self-rising flour, I used 1 ¾ cups (245g) all purpose flour + 1 ¾ teaspoons baking powder + ¼ teaspoon table salt

Serves 8

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Super tender coconut cake with coconut icing

Super tender coconut cake with coconut icing / Bolo de coco super macio com cobertura de coco

Since you already know I'm addicted to Suzanne Collins' books you won't be surprised to know that it took me four days to read "Catching Fire" and that I've already started reading "Mockinjay", right? :)
Now I cannot wait to watch the movie, even though knowing that Francis Lawrence is going to direct it doesn't actually thrill me.

"Mockinjay" makes me feel a bit like "The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest" did: I want to devour the book but at the same time I wish I could slow down the reading rhythm a little because it's the last book of the trilogy.

***

The more I bake from Lisa Yockelson's girlie book the happier I get for having bought it: so far, each and every recipe I've tried turned out fantastic, like this coconut cake: it was so tender it was even hard to slice it. Just delicious.

Super tender coconut cake with coconut icing
slightly adapted from the beautiful and delicious Baking Style: Art, Craft, Recipes

Cake:
2 ½ cups (300g) cake flour*
½ cup (70g) all purpose flour
2 ¼ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup (226g/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
3 cups + 3 tablespoons (445g) confectioners’ sugar, sifted
4 large eggs, separated
2 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
½ cup (120ml) coconut milk
½ cup (120ml) whole milk
1 ¼ cups (125g) sweetened flaked coconut
¼ teaspoon cream of tartar

Icing:
2 cups (280g) confectioners’ sugar
2-3 tablespoons coconut milk

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Butter and flour a 22x32cm (13x9in) baking pan**.
In a medium bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
In the large bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter for 3 minutes on medium speed. Add the confectioners’ sugar in 3 additions, beating well after each addition, then beat until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolks, 2 at a time, beating for 30 seconds after each addition. Scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally. Blend in the vanilla. On low speed, alternately add the sifted ingredients in 3 additions with the milks in 2 additions, beginning and ending with the sifted ingredients. Blend in the coconut.
In a clean, medium bowl whisk the egg whites with the cream of tartar until firm peaks form. Gradually fold the egg whites into the batter. Spoon the batter into the prepared cake pan and smooth the top. Bake until risen and golden and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, about 40 minutes.
Cool completely in the pan over a wire rack.
Make the icing: sift the confectioners’ sugar into a medium bowl. Gradually add the coconut milk, stirring, until desired consistency. Pour over the cooled cake and set aside until icing is set, about 30 minutes – since I used a pan with a removable bottom, I removed the sides of the pan before pouring the icing over the cake.

* homemade cake flour: 1 cup (140g) all purpose flour minus 2 tablespoons + 2 tablespoons corn starch

**I made the exact recipe above using a 20x30cm (8x12in) pan

Serves 18

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Little lemon syrup soaked coconut cakes

Little lemon syrup soaked coconut cakes / Bolinhos de limão siciliano e coco

I’ve probably written about this already here but there it goes: I usually fear (a little) watching again now the movies I loved as my much younger self – there’s always the risk of deception, the “what the heck was I thinking?” feeling. Luckily this hasn’t happened often and the movies I’ve seen lately have permanently cemented their place in my heart. One example is “The Crying Game”: I adore Neil Jordan’s work and that film is a masterpiece.

* spoilers *

To this day very few movies have deserved the Oscar for Best Writing, Original Screenplay as much as “The Crying Game” – the “twist” in the plot is a very creative one and I love the way Jordan unfolds it in the movie. Knowing that Stanley Kubrick and Jordan exchanged ideas about the movie made me love it even more – Kubrick believed that the role of Dil was uncastable; if the film production were to start today I would suggest the name of Andrej Pejic to both gentlemen – I wonder what they would think of my idea. :)

***

These little cakes, as simple as they look, are packed with a lot of flavor – lemon and coconut are really delicious combination.

Little lemon syrup soaked coconut cakes
slightly adapted from In the Sweet Kitchen

Cakes:
2 cups (280g) all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon baking powder
pinch of salt
1 ¼ cups (250g) granulated sugar
1 cup (100g) sweetened desiccated coconut
2 large eggs
1 cup (240ml) coconut milk
1 cup (226g/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
freshly grated zest of 2 large lemons
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Syrup:
½ cup + 2 tablespoons (124g) granulated sugar
1/3 cup (80ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼ cup (60ml) water

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Butter eight ¾ cup (180ml) capacity muffin cups or individual cake molds*.
Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl. Stir in the sugar and coconut. In a small bowl, lightly beat the eggs, then add the coconut milk and cooled melted butter. Stir with a whisk to blend the mixture into a thick, smooth liquid. Stir in the lemon zest and vanilla extract. Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients all at once and stir with a wooden spoon just until incorporated.
Spoon the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 30-35 minutes or until risen and golden around the edges and a wooden skewer inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.

Towards the end of the oven time, make the syrup: in a small saucepan, combine the sugar, juice and water and place over low heat, stirring just until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat to medium and bring the mixture to a boil. Boil for 6 to 8 minutes, until the syrup has thickened slightly. Remove from heat and set aside (the syrup is supposed to be pour over the cakes while both the syrup and the cakes are still warm).

Transfer the pans to a wire rack set over a baking sheet and cool for 10-12 minutes. Carefully remove the cakes from the pan, then return them to the pan (this is to ensure the cakes won’t get stuck in the pans). Use a small toothpick to make holes in the tops of each cake. Spoon the syrup over each cake and leave them to cool completely.

* this is the pan I used

Makes 8

Friday, March 23, 2012

Coconut custard bars + the unforgettable "Hugo"

Coconut custard bars / Barrinhas de coco

I don’t have kids, but I imagine that if I did I would love to cook and bake for them, because I already do that with lots of joy for the people I love and care about – I guess it’s a way of expressing my feelings. Maybe people like doing things they love for the ones they love. And why am I telling you all this, you might ask? Well, because that crossed my mind when I left the theater a couple of nights ago, after watching the fantastic “Hugo” – that was Scorsese’s way of expressing his love for his daughter: doing what he does best, what he loves to do for someone he loves. Some people say “I love/like you”, some bake cakes, and others make movies. :)

As I sat on my chair and started enjoying my popcorn, several kids entered the theater and sat down, too, waiting for the film to start. That is not something I see very often, given the sort of movies I usually watch. Fifteen minutes into the film and I thought to myself, “are these kids lucky or what?”, because as a child I did not have the opportunity to see something so strikingly beautiful, so perfectly made – actually, to be honest, even as an adult I haven’t seen many movies as beautiful as “Hugo”. I was mesmerized by the images, the colors, the sounds – I was in Paris. Asa Butterfly and his big blue eyes (which remind me of Elijah Wood’s) won my heart completely – he made me cry like a baby and by the end of the movie I wanted to take the kid home with me. I know Scorsese is a very gifted director and has the ability of improving just about anyone’s performance, but I never imagined he’d be so good at directing kids. On the other side, for each tear I shed there was lots of laughter with Sacha Baron Cohen – I thought he was delightful to watch, funny and adorable, which, to me, is Scorsese’s touch again (those of you who have watched Cohen’s previous performances might agree with me).

I wish I could tell you more about “Hugo” but I loved it so much and it moved me in such way that I sort of got speechless – this 33-year-old won’t be forgetting Martin Scorsese’s “kid’s movie”. Ever.

Coconut custard bars
slightly adapted from the wonderful The Good Cookie

Crust:
1 1/3 cups (186g) all purpose flour
1/3 cup (67g) granulated sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup (113g/1 stick) unsalted butter, cold and chopped into 1cm (½in) cubes
1 large egg yolk
2 teaspoons cold water
¾ teaspoon vanilla extract

Filling:
2 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
¾ cup (150g) granulated sugar
1 cup (240ml) unsweetened coconut milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons dark rum
1 tablespoon all purpose flour
pinch of salt
1 cup (100g) sweetened shredded coconut

Make the crust: preheat oven to 180°C/350°F. Butter a 22cm (9in) square pan*.
Place flour, sugar, salt in the bowl of a food processor and process until blended. Scatter butter pieces over the flour mixture and process until mixture resembles coarse meal. In a small bowl, whisk together egg yolk, water and vanilla. With food processor running, add yolk mixture through the feed tube and process just until the dough begins to come together in large clumps. Scrape the dough into the prepared pan and, using your fingers, pat it evenly into the bottom of the pan. Bake crust until golden, 20-25 minutes. Transfer the pan to wire rack and cool completely. Leave the oven on.
In medium bowl, whisk the eggs, egg yolk, and granulated sugar until blended. Slowly whisk in the coconut milk. Whisk in the vanilla, rum and flour and salt.
Sprinkle the coconut evenly over the cooled crust. Pour the filling through a fine sieve over the coconut, covering the crust completely. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until filling is set and the edges are golden brown. Cool completely in the pan on a wire rack. Using sharp knife, cut into bars.

* I made the exact recipe above using a 20cm (8in) square pan; since it has a removable bottom it was easy to unmold and cut the bars

Makes 12

Monday, February 6, 2012

Coconut cupcakes with chocolate frosting

Coconut cupcakes with chocolate frosting / Cupcakes de coco com cobertura de chocolate

I watched "The Tree of Life" last August but to this day I haven’t been able to write anything about the movie; just couldn’t put into words everything the film made me feel – there were so many tears that my eyes were swollen when I left the theater. Jessica Chastain’s character reminded me so much of my mother it felt like I was going back in time – that was the first movie I saw with the actress and I loved her performance. Not to say I wish I had her hair. :) And last week I read something about her that made me like her even more. :)

A couple of weeks ago I decided to bake something with the tons of coconut stashed in my pantry, so I adapted a recipe from the amazing "Bon Appetit Desserts" and got these tender, delicious cupcakes – then all I did was switch the cream cheese frosting for a chocolate one.

Coconut cupcakes with chocolate frosting / Cupcakes de coco com cobertura de chocolate

Coconut cupcakes with chocolate frosting
adapted from the always delicious Bon Appetit Desserts: The Cookbook for All Things Sweet and Wonderful

Cupcakes:
1 cup (140g) all purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
½ cup + 2 tablespoons (124g) granulated sugar
2/3 cup (150g) unsalted butter, room temperature
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1/3 cup (80ml) sour cream*
¼ cup (60ml) coconut milk
1/3 cup (33g) sweetened flaked coconut, plus some extra for decorating

Frosting:
112g (4oz) semisweet chocolate (do not exceed 61% cacao), chopped
56g (2oz) milk chocolate, chopped
2 tablespoons heavy cream
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
½ cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ cup (35g) icing sugar, sifted

Bake the cupcakes: preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Line 10 standard (1/3 cup capacity) muffin cups with paper liners; fill the empty cavities halfway up with water.
In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda.
In the large bowl of an electric mixer beat butter, sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg. Scrape the sides of the bowl eventually. In low speed, beat in half of the dry ingredients, then the sour cream, then the remaining dry ingredients. Beat in the coconut milk and sweetened coconut. Fill each paper liner 2/3 full with batter. Bake for about 18 minutes or until risen and golden and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool the cupcakes in the pan over a wire rack for 10 minutes then carefully remove from the pan. Transfer to the rack and cool completely.

Make the frosting: stir both chocolates, cream and butter in a medium bowl over a saucepan of simmering water until melted and smooth. Remove bowl from the water. Whisk in sour cream and vanilla, then icing sugar. Let stand until thick enough to spread, about 10 minutes (I was in a hurry and after those 10 minutes I refrigerated the frosting for 5 minutes).
Spread frosting on top of completely cooled cupcakes and sprinkle with the extra coconut.

* homemade sour cream: to make 1 cup of sour cream, mix 1 cup (240ml) heavy cream with 2-3 teaspoons lemon juice in a bowl. Whisk until it starts to thicken. Cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature for 1 hour or until thicker (I usually leave mine on the counter overnight – except on very warm nights – and it turns out thick and silky in the following morning, refrigerate for a creamier texture)

Makes 10

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Coconut rice pudding with toasted almonds + "Super 8"

Coconut rice pudding with toasted almonds / Arroz doce de coco com amêndoas tostadas

So my sister convinced me to go watch "Super 8" with her – you see, I belong to the Goonies generation, therefore I’m always suspicious towards movies with kids – I never expect much, because I know deep in my heart that nothing will beat my favorite. But I have to say that I was impressed with “Super 8”: I thought the movie was adorable, with very well directed scenes, and Elle Fanning is certainly one to be watched in the future.

What does “Super 8” have to do with this rice pudding? Well, actually, nothing. It’s just that my sister loved it as much as she loved the movie. And I did, too. :D

Coconut rice pudding with toasted almonds
slightly adapted from the always gorgeous Donna Hay Magazine

1/3 cup flaked almonds
1 cup (200g) Arborio rice
4 cups (960ml) coconut milk
1/3 cup (80ml) whole milk
½ cup + 1 tablespoon (112g) superfine sugar

Toast the almonds in a dry nonstick frying pan over medium heat until lightly golden and fragrant. Transfer to a plate and set aside to cool.
Make the rice pudding: combine the rice, coconut milk, milk and sugar in a medium saucepan and cook over high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil, reduce heat to low, cover and cook, stirring often, until rice is tender, 20 minutes.
Serve the pudding warm sprinkled with the almonds.

Serves 4

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Coconut orange tea cake and things that make me wanna scream

Coconut orange tea cake / Bolo de coco e laranja

I’m going to share something with you, even though you might think I’m crazy: there are times when certain things are so, so good I feel like screaming (for the record, I don’t actually scream). ;)

Off the top of my head I remember feeling like that after watching “Stay” and "Inception", listening to The Temper Trap’s “Love Lost” (especially from 1min50seg on), and more recently, this cake. An absolutely simple cake – no icings or fillings – put together in a heartbeat, but so delicious and tender I felt like screaming – and like devouring the whole thing myself, too. Not pretty, I know. But so true. :D

Coconut orange tea cake
from Dorie’s amazing and delicious book

2 cups (280g) all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
pinch of salt
1 cup (240ml) canned unsweetened coconut milk*
¼ cup (56g/½ stick) unsalted butter, in cubes
4 large eggs, room temperature
2 cups (400g) caster (superfine) sugar
finely grated zest of 1 orange
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons dark rum
¾ cup (75g) unsweetened shredded coconut
freshly squeezed juice of ½ orange

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Butter a 22-25cm/9-10in (10-12 cup) bundt pan or use an unbuttered silicone pan. Do not place the pan on a baking sheet – you want the oven’s heat to circulate through the tube**.
Sift flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl.
Place coconut milk and butter in a small saucepan and heat over medium heat until milk is hot and butter is melted. Remove from the heat but keep warm.
Place the sugar and orange zest in the large bowl of an electric mixer and rub them together until sugar is fragrant. Add the eggs to the bowl and, using the whisk attachment, beat the ingredients until pale and thick, about 3 minutes. Beat in the vanilla and the rum. Reduce the speed to low and add the dry ingredients, beating just until flour is incorporated. Scrape the sides of the bowl. Keeping the mixer on low, add the coconut, mixing only until blended. Add the coconut milk and butter and the orange juice. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 60-65 minutes or until risen and golden and a skewer inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool the cake in the pan over a wire rack for 15 minutes, then carefully unmold onto the rack and cool completely (if using a silicone pan, follow the manufacturer’s instructions). Dust with icing sugar to serve.

* coconut milk comes in 200ml bottles here in Brazil; to avoid opening another bottle to use only a couple of tablespoons of the coconut milk, I used one coconut milk bottle + 40ml whole milk

** I used a silicone pan and it wouldn’t hold still on the oven rack; I placed it on a baking sheet and it worked fine

Serves 10-12

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Piña Colada cake

Piña Colada cake / Bolo Piña Colada

This is the cake I made for my MIL’s birthday; I’d already set up my mind to bake a chocolate cake, but when I called her to ask which flavor she wanted she told me I was being kind enough to bake her the cake, so she would not choose the flavor – I should do that, instead; just what I needed to try a different cake from my favorite layer cake book. :D

I could not find canned pineapple in juice, so I bought it in syrup and adapted the filling. I thought the pineapple jam was delicious and the coconut buttercream almost addictive – but wasn’t all that happy about the cake layers. They tasted good, because of the massive amounts of brown sugar, but the texture was a bit heavy in my opinion. If you’re interested in making the piña colada cake, I suggest the cake layers from this recipe.

Piña Colada cake
adapted from Sky High: Irresistible Triple-Layer Cakes

Brown sugar cake:
3¾ cups (525g) cake flour*
1¾ teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
2¼ cups (393g) packed light brown sugar
1 cup (226g/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1¾ cups (420ml) buttermilk
5 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2/3 cups (160ml) rum (light, amber or dark), to assemble the cake

Pineapple filling:
1 can (560g/20oz) sliced pineapple in syrup
1 cup (200g) caster sugar
1/3 cup (80ml) freshly squeezed lime juice
3 tablespoons water
½ vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped with the back of a knife

Coconut buttercream:
3 eggs whites
pinch of salt
1 cup (200g) caster sugar
¼ cup (60ml) water
2½ sticks (280g/10oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2/3 cup (160ml) unsweetened coconut milk

Decoration:
½ cup (50g) sweetened shredded coconut, lightly toasted (if desired)
pineapple slice

Start by making the cakes: preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Butter three 22cm (9in) cake pans, line the base with baking paper and butter the paper as well.
Sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt into the large bowl of a stand mixer. Whisk gently to combine. Add the brown sugar, butter and 1½ cups of the buttermilk to the dry ingredients. With the mixer on low blend to incorporate. Raise the speed to medium and beat until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes.
Whisk the eggs with the remaining ¼ cup buttermilk and the vanilla and add to the batter in 3 additions, scraping down the sides of the bowl well and beating only long enough to incorporate between additions. Divide the batter between the 3 pans.
Bake for 25-28 minutes or until a cake tester or wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let the layers cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then turn out onto wire racks, carefully peel off the paper and allow to cool completely.

Now, the pineapple filling: drain the pineapple and discard the syrup. Set aside 1 slice of pineapple (for decoration) and finely chop the other slices. Place in a medium saucepan with the sugar, lime juice and water. Add the vanilla seeds you scraped from the vanilla bean. Warm over a medium-low heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar, 2 to 3 minutes. Raise the heat to medium and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the juices have almost completely evaporated and turned jam-like in consistency. Let the filling cool completely before using. Can be made a day in advance and refrigerated.

Make the buttercream: put the eggs whites and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whip attachment so they are ready to go.
Combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan and place over a medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Bring to the boil and cook without stirring until the syrup reaches the sold boil stage, 114°C/238°F on a candy thermometer.
Beat the egg whites briefly at medium speed. Slowly add the hot syrup in a thin stream, being careful to avoid the beaters. Continue to whip until the meringue has cooled to body temperature.
With the mixer on low speed, gradually add the butter, several tablespoons at a time and continue to beat until a smooth fluffy frosting forms.
Add the coconut milk in several additions, scraping down the sides of the bowl well after each addition. Measure 1 cup of the buttercream and mix with the pineapple filling.

Assembling the cake: place one layer flat side up on a cake stand. Sprinkle a generous 3 tablespoons** rum over the cake. Spread half of the filling over the layer, leaving a small gap around the edge. Add the second layer, sprinkle with more rum and cover with the remaining filling. Top with the third layer and sprinkle with the remaining rum.
Frost the top and sides of the cake with the coconut buttercream. Decorate the sides of the cake with
the shredded coconut and top with the reserved pineapple slice.

* homemade cake flour: 1 cup (140g) all purpose flour minus 2 tablespoons + 2 tablespoons corn starch

** I used only 1 tablespoon of rum per cake layer

Serves 14-16 – I made 2/3 of the recipe above and used 20cm (8in) cake pans

Monday, June 15, 2009

Passion fruit coconut caramels

Passion fruit coconut caramels / Pudim de coco e maracujá

Aside from “Damages” second season, I haven’t watched anything interesting lately. The movies I want to watch will take a while to get here, so I think the solution will be a quick trip to the video store.

Knowing my DH mag would take a while to arrive – the editions follow the seasons here on the South Hemisphere, so there will be plenty of delicious winter recipes – I reached for my plan B when it comes to wonderful food.

Passion fruit coconut caramels / Pudim de coco e maracujá

Passion fruit coconut caramels
slightly adapted from Australian Gourmet Traveller

1 cup (200g) demerara sugar, divided
¾ cup + 1 tablespoon (200ml) coconut milk
1/3 cup (80ml) heavy cream
2 eggs
2 egg yolks
1/3 cup (80 ml) passion fruit juice*

Combine ½ cup (100g) demerara sugar and ½ cup (120ml) water in a small saucepan and stir over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves, then bring to the boil and cook for 4-5 minutes or until caramelized. Remove from heat and pour into six ½ cup-capacity ovenproof dariole moulds** and set aside.
Preheat oven to 150ºC/302ºF. Combine remaining ½ cup (100g) demerara sugar, coconut milk and cream in a saucepan and stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves, then bring just to the boil. Whisk eggs, yolks and passion fruit juice to combine, pour over cream mixture, whisking to combine, then strain into a jug. Pour into prepared moulds and place in a roasting pan. Fill pan halfway up sides of moulds with boiling water, cover pan with foil and bake for 25 minutes or until just set. Remove moulds from water and refrigerate until cold.
To serve, dip mould bases in boiling water, invert onto plates and unmould.

* to make passion fruit juice, blend passion fruit pulp in a food processor to crack seeds, then strain through a fine sieve.

** I used three 1-cup-capacity soufflé bowls and doubled the oven time

Serves 6

Passion fruit coconut caramels / Pudim de coco e maracujá

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