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Coconut Raspberry Lemon Cake

 

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I asked my friend Tammy what kind of cake she wanted for her birthday.  She mentioned that she saw one on Pinterest that she liked.  She mentioned that it was a lemon cake, and it had a lemon frosting, with coconut and raspberry jam spread between the layers.  For some reason my mind instantly went back to Zingers, those little store-bought snack cakes that I ate as a kid.  

Speaking of Zingers, I have to share something with you that just came back to me from my childhood days. When I was a kid, I lived on a farm.  We had lots of horses, cows and pigs.  My dad never allowed my mom to buy us very many store-bought treats, so luckily my mom made plenty of homemade ones. Well anyhow, once a week my twin sister and I, we were about five or six, used to stand down by the road and wait for the Butternut bread truck to go by our house and we would wave to the driver.  He would always throw us a package of day old donuts or snack cakes.  Although my mom’s homemade treats were so superior to these, we thought we were in heaven eating these day old treats from the bread truck, just because we never got them.

We had this little building down by our barn, we called the corn crib.  My dad would harvest the field corn in the fall and fill the corn crib for the animals to eat.  By early summer, the corn crib was getting pretty empty.  Well one day, my dad came home from work, and had the entire back of his truck filled with all kinds of cakes, pies and pastries.  My sister and I could not believe our eyes.  Back then, you could buy a whole truck load of day old pastries from the Butternut bread company for almost nothing.  OMG!  My dad decided he was going to feed these to our animals.  WOW…healthy animals!  We watched my dad as he loaded the corn crib with all of those wonderful cakes, pies and pastries.  We could not wait for my dad to leave for work the next day.  Let my tell ya, a major corn crib robbery took place.  We filled our playhouse with ALL kinds of goodies.  We thought we had truly died and gone to heaven.  After we had sufficiently filled our playhouse, I decided I should share some of them with my pony, Sunny.  My mom, who was of course smarter than the little twins, decided to freeze some of the treats for them to enjoy later.

Well anyhow, I’ll come back to the present now…I decided that I would make my own version of this cake that Tammy was talking about, and I was sure that a homemade version of a zinger would be so much better than the day old ones that I ate as a kid.  Therefore I went to work in my lab, the kitchen.

I wanted the cake itself to be light and airy, and I knew just the recipe I wanted to start with for the cake….a recipe that’s never failed me through years of baking…Silver White Cake from my mom’s very old Betty Crocker cookbook.  I decided to make this light and airy vanilla cake but add a fresh lemony flavor to it.  Then I used organic raspberry fruit spread and sweetened flaked coconut to tuck inside of the layers, along with some homemade lemon butter cream.  All I can say is YUM…I will never eat another store-bought day old Zinger again!  Now the only problem I had was naming the cake.  Should I call it Zinger cake or Coconut Raspberry Lemon Cake?  Help!  This name thing is stressing me out.  I’ll just think on it why I tell ya how I made it…

Here’s how I made it…  (oh yes, there really is a printable recipe, following my many illustrated steps)…

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The first thing I did was prepare two 9″ cake pans.  I cut two circles of wax paper, the size of each pan.  Next, I greased the wax paper rounds and the insides of the pans with Crisco…then I lightly floured both the wax paper rounds and the insides of the pans and set them aside…

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The next thing I did, was measure some cake flour into a large bowl…then I sifted the flour, along with some baking powder and salt, through a wire mesh sieve (you can use a sifter) into a bowl and set it aside.  Sifting the cake flour, helps to make the cake light and airy…

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Then I mixed some buttermilk together with some egg whites and set the mixture aside…

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Next I placed some butter in the bowl of my stand mixer, (you can use a hand mixer) and mixed it with the paddle attachment until it was nice and creamy…

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Then I added some sugar…

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And mixed the two together until the sugar was incorporated into the butter…

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Next I added some lemon zest, pure lemon extract and lemon juice….

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And mixed everything together until all ingredients were incorporated…

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Then I added half of my buttermilk-egg white mixture…

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And mixed it just a few seconds to incorporate…

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Then I added half of my flour mixture and again, mixed just a few seconds to incorporate.  Note:  The more you mix batter after adding the flour, the less tender your cake will be.  It’s important to just incorporate but not over incorporate the flour.  Most professional bakers will stipulate to add the flour and wet mixture alternately by thirds.  I don’t necessarily agree with this method.  I like to use half wet mixture, half flour, half wet and half flour. Each time you add the wet mixture, you’re also incorporating the flour more…that’s why I prefer to add the ingredients only twice instead of three times…   

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Next I added the second half of my buttermilk-egg white mixture…

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And lightly incorporated it in, (just a few seconds)…

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And lastly, I added the rest of my flour mixture…

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I mixed the batter for about ten seconds, stopped and scraped down the sides of the bowl…

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Then I mixed the batter for about fifteen more seconds, until the flour was incorporated and the batter was pretty smooth…

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I divided the batter equally between the two prepared cake pans…

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And baked them for about thirty minutes until they were brown around the edges and barely starting to brown on top.  I inserted a toothpick into the center of each one and it came out clean.  Notice the tops are just barely browned…

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After allowing the cakes to cool for about five minutes, I ran a knife around the edges of the cake layers and gently shook each pan to make sure the cakes were loose and inverted them onto wire racks to cool, while I made the filling and frosting.  See how light and airy the cake above is…because I sifted the cake flour and did not over incorporate the flour…

Okay, so while the cake layers cooled, I made the frosting.

Here’s how I made it…

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First I placed some softened cream cheese in the mixing bowl of my stand mixer, and I whisked it on high-speed until it was very smooth and creamy and free of any lumps.  I find this to be easier with the whisk attachment. Note:  It’s important to always beat the cream cheese until it’s very light and creamy and free of any lumps before adding additional ingredients…

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Next I added some softened butter and whisked the butter and cream cheese together until the mixture was creamy again…

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Then I added some lemon zest, lemon extract and lemon juice…

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And whisked them into the mixture…

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Next I added some powdered sugar, but not all at one time, and whisked it in…

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Then I added more powdered sugar as needed…

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Until I had the perfect consistency that I was looking for.  If the frosting becomes too thick, you can add a little bit of cream or milk to slightly thin it…

Once I made my frosting, I went back to my cake…

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First I made sure the cake layers were completely cooled, and I used a cake leveler to cut through each cake layer, (you can use a long serrated knife instead)…

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And I cut each layer horizontally into two thinner layers… 

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I placed one cake layer, cut side up, on a cake plate.  I placed pieces of wax paper under the edges, because I’m a messy decorator…

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Next I spread a thin layer of organic raspberry fruit spread over the layer, spreading it almost to the edges…

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Then I carefully spread a layer of my cake frosting over the fruit spread.  The two will slightly mix together, but that’s okay…

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Followed by a nice sprinkling of coconut…

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Followed by the next layer…

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More fruit spread, frosting and coconut, followed by a third layer…

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More fruit spread, frosting and coconut, followed by a fourth layer.  Okay, so mine looks a little lopsided.  Must be the camera…

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Then lastly, I frosted the sides and top of the cake.  If you want, you can spread a thin crumb coating over the sides first and place the cake in a freezer for ten minutes, before frosting the cake.  I didn’t do this, because uhh I was too lazy…   

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Then for a pretty garnish, I added a dollop of the raspberry spread in the center of the top, a slice or two of lemon and a sprinkling of coconut…

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Okay, this cake definitely leaves the Zinger sitting miles behind in the race…therefore, I officially name this cake Coconut Raspberry Lemon Cake…whew!

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If you love the combination of a moist lemony cake combined with raspberry fruit spread, creamy lemon frosting and coconut, you’ll love this recipe.  I promise!!  

Enjoy!

Cindy @ My Country Table

Print

Raspberry Coconut Lemon Cake


  • Author: Cindy Gibbs @ My Country Table
  • Prep Time: 30
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 60

Description

A lemony cake hides a surprise of coconut, raspberry spread and lemony frosting between light and airy cake layers.


Ingredients

For the Cake

  • 2 1/4 cups cake flour
  • 3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick real butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure lemon extract
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

For the Frosting

  • 4 ounces of cream cheese, softened
  • 2 stick real butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon pure lemon extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 6 cups powdered sugar, more or less as needed
  • Milk or cream as needed

For the Filling

  • 3/4 cup Raspberry organic fruit spread
  • 3/4 cup sweetened flaked coconut

Instructions

For the Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line two nine inch round cake pans with a cut round of wax paper. Grease and lightly flour the sides and bottoms of the pans and set aside.
  3. Measure the flour. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together through a sifter or wire mesh strainer and set aside.
  4. Mix the buttermilk and egg whites together in a large measuring cup or medium bowl and set aside.
  5. Place the butter in the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, or use a hand mixer. Mix on high speed until light and creamy. Add the sugar and mix until incorporated and mixture becomes creamy again. Add the lemon extract, lemon zest, vanilla and lemon juice and mix to incorporate, about thirty seconds. Add half of the buttermilk/egg white mixture and mix about ten seconds. Add half of the flour mixture and mix again for about ten seconds. Repeat with the second half of each.
  6. Divide the batter equally between the cake pans. Gently shake the pans and tap on a counter to remove any air bubbles.
  7. Bake for approximately thirty minutes until cake layers are golden brown around the sides and edges and a toothpick comes out clean. Invert cake layers onto a wire rack to cool, and peel off the wax paper rounds.

For the Frosting

  1. Place the cream cheese in a large mixing bowl and whisk on high until the cream cheese becomes very light and creamy and free of any lumps. Add the butter and whisk on high speed until the mixture becomes light and creamy again. Add the lemon extract, zest and juice and mix to incorporate.
  2. Add the powdered sugar, a couple of cups at a time, and mix well after each addition. Add enough of the sugar to reach the perfect spreading consistency. If frosting becomes too thick, add a small amount of milk or cream to thin it back down.

For the Filling

  1. Place one cake layer on a cake plate, cut side up.
  2. Spread 1/4 cup of the raspberry fruit spread over the layer, spreading almost to the edge of the cake layer. Gently spread a layer of frosting over the raspberry layer. Don’t worry if some of the frosting mixes in with the fruit spread. Sprinkle 1/4 cup of the coconut over the frosting. Repeat with all layers, ending with the top layer cut side down.
  3. Frost the top and sides of the cake.

Notes

  • Optional: Garnish by placing a dollop of raspberry spread in the center of the top of cake, along with a couple of drained lemon slices, followed by a sprinkling of coconut.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 12

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