Baking Greek Coconut Cake with “World Class Cakes” by Roger Pizey
When Kathleen asked me to take over the Cake Slice Bakers post I was nervous. By virtue that baking has never been my strong suit. In fact I have spent a good deal of my life burning and exploding bakes. But I pulled on my big girl panties and decided to take on Roger Pizey’s “Greek Coconut Cake.” It seemed pretty straight forward. The biggest problem with baking for me is that I love to experiment and change things in a recipe. Well you just have to follow the rules a little bit closer with a good bake. So I followed the rules as precisely as possible. The Greek Coconut Cake was going to happen. It would be beautiful and tasty.
Mommy mistake number one. Do not start to bake before you put your children down for bed! Especially if you are not a world class baker. Everything was measured and executed correctly. The batter was smooth and the texture was spot on. My kids were happily playing together. Popped that baby in my oven and let it be. Then the house was too quiet. Consequently, my 18 month old had snuck into the kitchen and turned the oven way down… like 180 degrees low. Oh and the timer was cleared out. AND I didn’t even notice. I went and got him and went about my other bedtime responsibilities. Then I am waiting for that sweet homemade cake smell to permeate into my house. Cue billowing smoke and alarms. Frantic Mom runs wildly to kitchen. Babies are awake. Le sigh.
“Candice burns and overflows cakes. Don’t be like Candice. Be like Roger Pizey and don’t bake with small tired humans.”
Take two. Babies are in bed so the re-baking can begin. Once again the recipe is followed and the batter is beautiful and perfect, 18 eggs later. Then the oven is checked and re-check and checked again. Bam! Once and for all that cake was in the oven for an hour and a half. And being checked every two minutes by yours truly. Finally, that comforting sweet smell of success hits me like a small plastic toy hammer. Yes, the joy of a lovely Greek Coconut Cake from my “own” clean oven. (The post clean oven was a perk to my catastrophe).
Finishing out strong with the lemon simple syrup and the caramelized coconut that was so delicious I could have ate the warm goodness straight from the pan. I did a little. Ok, I ate a good “bit” and loved it. Once the cake was cooled it came together well and finished out like a champ. Simply and seamlessly. Rodger Pizey turned my hopeless not-baker self into a successful baker. I could cry!
Now for the good part of the opportunity of baking with The Cake Slice Bakers. Eating. Because this is a long bake the crust is pretty impressive and that is where the lemon syrup comes in. Much like a poke cake you add the syrup over top and the caramelized coconut on top and a final bake. This technique makes for a perfectly moist bite. Also, as the cake rested overnight the flavors became more pronounced and the texture stayed surprisingly fresh. This cake will live on as my favorite successful bake. Thanks Roger!
Greek Coconut Cake: World Class Cakes
- 1 cup softened salted butter
- 2½ cups bakers sugar
- 9 large eggs beaten well
- 3¾ cups unsweetened coconut
- 2¼ cups self rising flour
- Simple Lemon Syrup:
- 1¼ cups bakers sugar
- 1¼ cups water
- ½ a lemon worth of juice and zest
- Caramel Coconut Topping:
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 5¾ oz flaked unsweetened coconut
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Grease 9 inch pan and add parchment on bottom.
- Cream butter and sugar. Add the beaten eggs a little at a time. Then the coconut and flour in batches.
- Making sure to scrape down the bowl as you add additional ingredients. Combine well.
- Add to your pan and bake for 1-1/2 to 2 hours. Until a toothpick comes out cleanly. Cool.
- Make syrup: Add all the ingredients to a pan and boil until the sugar dissolves. Cool.
- Make Coconut Topping: Add sugar and cream to a pan and cook until sugar dissolves. Take off the heat add coconut flakes. Mix well.
- Put it together: Take cooled cake still in the pan and poke holes in the top pour the syrup over top. Then add the coconut topping liberally over the top.
- Turn up oven to 375 degrees and bake until the coconut topping is golden brown.
- Let cool for 10 minutes then turn it out carefully.
The Cake Slice Bakers
To see the other Cake Slice Baker’s bakes scroll down below and look at their pretty pictures and deliciousness. As mentioned earlier we are baking from Roger Pizey’s “World Class Cakes,” which is also linked on the side bar for more info. Furthermore, if you’re a blogger and would like to join The Cake Slice Bakers, (posting is always the 20th of each month) you can request to join our group on Facebook. In addition to the other options, if you just love cakes, follow our Pinterest board to see all of the great cakes we bake!
This month’s cake choices were:
1. Thierry Busset’s Ten Layer Coffee Chocolate Cake p. 50
2. Greek Coconut Cake p. 75
3. Banana Loaf p.65
4. Mandarin, Polenta, and Macadamia Cake p. 107