Coconut Cake, #The Cake Slice Bakers

The Cake Slice Bakers are a group of bakers from around the world. We vote on a recipe and then bake the sweet from the same cookbook every month. Our current book is Carole Walter's Great Cakes. This month's sweet assignment? Coconut Cake!


Coconut Layer Cake was this month’s Cake Slice Baker’s challenge.  Layer cakes are grand. Especially coconut ones. Yet, the image of a coconut layer cake conjures up the image of sitting in a stuffy Southern living room. Fine on a chilly winter’s day… But it’s spring!

Springtime Cherry Blossoms in Kamakura, Japan

Whether I’m strolling with my 88-year-old mother in a quiet Northern California neighborhood or whether I’m striding down Main Street in Southern California, birds are singing! My fine-feathered friends won’t let me forget to celebrate this season of rebirth. 

Japanese haiku poetry master, Basho expresses with elegance the lighthearted hopefulness that accompanies spring:

“April’s air stirs in
Willow-leaves…a butterfly
Floats and balances”

~Matsuo Basho

Sweets easily transported outside are essential in springtime. So, instead of a coconut layer cake I baked up stackable coconut cupcakes.


The crumb was fine and the cake moist. Part of what makes Carole Walter’s recipes live up to her dessert cookbook title, Great Cakes, is the great care she takes to double sift flour.  The grande dame of baking also insists that bakers allow extra butter-beating to encourage aeration as sugar is added one tablespoon at a time.

A pink-tinted buttercream tops the coconut cupcakes.
For extra coconutty flavored frosting, substitute coconut milk
and use coconut extract instead of vanilla.

Despite the greatness of Carole Walter’s recipe, I boldly modified her coconut cake recipe by substituting coconut milk for cow’s milk. (Tip: Due to the extra creamy nature of coconut milk, add an additional 3 tablespoons to the required ¾ cup milk.) Vanilla extract was also replaced by ¾ teaspoon of coconut extract. The result? An A+ coconut cupcake that doesn’t bury all other flavors in overstated coconut!

 Butterflies & Coconut Cupcakes....Could spring be any sweeter?

Here’s some good news, bad news: The Great Cakes author is now sharing many delectable dessert recipes at Carole Including her luscious buttercream frosting needed for the coconut layer cake. The bad news (unless you own the Great Cakes cookbook) is that her coconut cake recipe has yet to be shared.

I Googled and clicked away on many a link to bring you a coconut layer cake recipe which is almost identical to the Great Cakes version. Alas, none were to be found. However, I did find this similar coconut cake how-to from one of the chef stars of TV’s The Chew.




Wishing you butterflies, birds and blissful springtime sweets.

The Ninja Baker

© ™ Watkinson 2012

The Ninja Baker has guest blogged and contributed recipes to numerous food sites. These additional recipes can be found here.



Follow on Bloglovin