Rose's Heavenly Cake - Free Choice:
Southern (Manhattan) Coconut Cake with Silk Meringue Buttercream
I had church fellowship gathering at my house the weekend so i thought this was great cake to make since i can taste a tiny slice and everyone else too. :D As you know by now, i'm not really a fan of coconut-in-desserts except coconut fruit and drink itself and in curries.
I decided to make 2 coconut cakes one using freshly squeezed coconut juice and the other using canned coconut. The process of making the cake with freshly squeezed coconut juice is documented with photos..and here they are (so means i can write less right?)....:-
The freshly grated coconut for juicing.. the coconut milk..
Then i put them in the muslin bag (specially for this purpose)..
I told my domestic helper to squeeze the coconut milk out of the bag since i have to take photos.
After, just follow recipe instructions in the book and it's pretty straight forward...
This first cake is made with canned coconut milk. Notice the dome? And notice my 2.5 year old oven still very new and clean? Seriously, it is still very spotless and grease-free. I'm a bit sad that I have to let go of it despite it is in good working condition...wonder if anyone would buy it from me...
This is the cake make with freshly squeezed coconut milk..less dome..
This is my coconut creme angliase and is made with fresh coconut milk. I didn't have coconut extract, so i used pandan coconut essense.. Pandan coconut essense is really good! Brings out the smell totally! Anyway, after spending all the time making this..i was disappointed that it tasted like Kaya to me and it then dawned on me that Kaya uses the same ingredients too! (Kaya is a local coconut jam that is very tasty on its own and with bread...but i don't like it....LOL!).
After mix the coconut creme angliase with the buttercream..and frost..4 layers of cakes and you have a tall cake like this. The bottom 2 layers are the ones made with canned coconut milk and the top 2 are the ones made with fresh coconut milk. LOL! Oh..in case you all are wondering why i stack them up like this....That's because i have very limited fridge space and I have another 4-5 more dishes to cook...hence vertical upwards is more space-saving compared to having 2 cakes sitting separately in my fridge.
I like how tall my cake turned out..:D Since i was going to cover it with fresh grated coconut, i didn't really smoothen out the buttercream. I forgot to add the grated coconut in the frosting layers!
Here's another bag of freshly grated coconut..this the 'cleaner or prettier' version (see above first photo) and not usually used for juicing. I added a bit of salt to the grated coconut, as what my mom has always taught me. I'm glad I remembered because the slightly salted grated coconut compliments very well with the overall sweetness of cake.
Here..the final cake..sorry for the bad photograph.. i took it in a hurry.
And here's the inner cake layers taken with my phone.
VERDICT: The cake was a hit. Everyone liked the flavor but the general consensus is it is very sweet. Some couldn't tell the difference between the top 2-layers and the bottom 2-layers. Some told me that the top layer is less sweet compared the the bottom layer which i tend to think so too. The bottom layer, ie, the cake made with canned coconut milk is much sweeter. Overall, it tasted much better than i thought it would be. My only complain is that it is very sweet...too sweet for my liking...and i have a sweet tooth by our local standards. If i'm ever going to remake this, i'll probably use fresh coconut milk and not the canned ones. (A friend told me that there's fresh coconut milk in carton in the fresh milk section of the supermarket and i didnt know that...i'll have to try that the next time..)