This coconut layer cake is light and the flavor comes from coconut extract which is super easy to find.
I've made this a few times, and I just stumbled into it. My step son wanted a coconut cake for his 11th birthday. But he didn't want the one that was "like Ian's", his brother. That coconut cake recipe is more pound cake in texture. He wanted different and he wanted some frosting.
I scoured my grandma's collection of recipe books looking through her Italian cakes - but couldn't find a suitable recipe. Seemed so many called for that canned coconut. And that's just not available to everyone.
So I decided to make a normal white cake recipe and flavor with coconut extract rather than vanilla or almond. Next added a real simple but decadent coconut frosting . (It's basically just butter and cream cheese with coconut flavoring.) I can't legit put this in my easy cake recipes just because of the "steps". But it's not a pain-in-the-butt either. It's an in-betweener.
What was funny was my mom saw me post this on the site after my step-sons birthday - and SHE requested it for her birthday. I won't even begin to tell you the whole story there...Ok, maybe I will. My mom rented a condo for her birthday and I had to bring cake pans in my suitcase, along with all the dry ingredients for this. I wrapped the coconut extract in bubble wrap and then a sandwich baggie... And, I really don't even want to finish the story. Except to say, I really do love this cake. And I could be my mom's favorite for awhile.
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2 cups of flour sifted
1 1/2 cups of sugar
3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 sticks of butter (1 cup) room temperature
1 teaspoon of coconut extract
1 cup of milk
4 egg whites (if you want the cake white)
4 eggs (both white and yolk if you don't mind a bit of "yellow" in the cakes color)
* Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
* Grease 2 - 9 inch cake pans (and FLOUR them also)
* Beat sugar, butter, sugar, baking powder, salt and milk, and eggs (if using whole eggs option)
* If you want a WHITE cake remember you are using egg whites.
* * * * For those of you using egg whites instead of the whole egg - go ahead and:
* * * beat egg whites until they are stiff
* * Fold them into the cake batter
* Now everybody ( egg white people AND whole egg people ) - sift the flour and gradually add it to the cake batter.
* Blend well
* I beat this for awhile. I like and airy cake since this is so rich.
* Pour batter into well greased and floured cake pan
* Bake for or until toothpick (or whatever tester you use) comes out clean
See my coconut frosting recipe.
* And the coconut on the top? It's optional. And you can toast it or not toast it (if you use it at all).
A white cake uses egg whites to keep the cakes color - white. So if you don't care se the whole egg and this coconut layer cake will be creamy or yellow. (No big deal)
Uh yeah. But the point was to make a coconut LAYER cake . However, it works just fine in a 13 x 9 pan. I've done that too. Just set the timer for 35 minutes and check. Oh, and I wouldn't make the full batch of coconut frosting . You will need about half, but a tad more. A half plus a tad.
Back to the top of the coconut layer cake .