Let there be cake

by Alexandra

I used to say that I liked the idea of cake, but I didn’t really like eating cake. That was only because I had never come across a really good cake, though. That has all changed.

I believe I have professed my love for this blog in the past, but it has reached a whole new level.

Gasp.

I took this cupcake recipe and made it into a cake. I added bananas in the middle and put chopped almonds on the outside in addition to coconut. But, I actually followed the recipe (I’m getting so good at doing that!) and it turned out amazing.

Soft, fluffy cake. Light but rich frosting. This is the lightest buttercream I’ve ever come across. I usually hate buttercream because it’s so dense. This is beauty in cake form.

Almond Cake with Chocolate-Coconut Buttercream from The Little Red House
 
2-1/4 cups cake flour
2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1-1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 teaspoons almond extract
1 cup coconut milk
 
3/4 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon almond extract (I added)
2 cups powdered sugar (reduced from 3)
3/4 cup coconut milk
1 teaspoon pure coconut extract (I omitted)
 
1 cup flaked coconut, almonds or both
2 large, ripe bananas, sliced
 
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt, set aside.
  2. Cream together 1/2 cup butter and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, then vanilla extract and 2 teaspoons almond extract.
  3. Add flour mixture in small (about 1/2 cup) additions, alternating with the (1 cup portion) coconut milk, starting and ending with flour, mixing well after each addition.
  4. Prepare a 10-inch or 11-inch spring form pan (buttered and floured) and pour in the batter. Spin between palms to settle batter, then bake in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes. (I did exactly 40) until cake is soft and spongy, and a toothpick comes out with a few soft crumbs. Don’t over-bake! Cool completely in pan.
  5. Meanwhile for the frosting, cream the butter and almond extract. Add a bit of the cocoa to “get it started” then add the 3/4 cup coconut milk and the rest of the cocoa powder. Mix very well, then add powdered sugar until you reach desired consistency. Set aside (keep at room temperature)
  6. Toast the coconut/almonds for about 5 or 6 minutes in the 350-degree oven. Do not over-toast. Watch carefully! Cool completely.
  7. Cut the cooled cake in half (Alton Brown has a good tutorial on how to do this) then spread a thin layer of buttercream on the bottom half. Cover with one layer of banana slices, then dollop teaspoonfuls of frosting on top. Place the other half of the cake over the bananas, then frost with remaining frosting and coat with nuts. Chill before serving to allow the frosting to set.
-Alexandra
 
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