Yesterday, lots of blogs announcing the 2013 A to Z Challenge and listing the team of 13 who will be the hosts this year. Last year I did A2Z recipes and am planning to do the same thing this year. I found that rather fun searching for recipes which fitted some of the more obscure letters, X being one. I write a blog every day so don’t find it too difficult, but some bloggers only post one or two a week so they really find it a challenge to write a blog every day (except Sunday) for a whole month. I ‘met’ quite a few bloggers last year and hope to meet more this year although I find it difficult to keep up with all the posts throughout the year. How Alex Cavanaugh manages to visit so many blogs plus read and answer the very many comments he gets on his own blog I could never imagine. He must spend 24 hours on his computer. I am glad he does though, he is one of my most regular commenters.
Here’s a nice recipe for one’s waistline. It looks pretty scrumptious to me though. Some people don’t like coconut, but I do.
Sour Cream Chocolate Cake with Coconut FrostingSource: Fine Cooking - Issue 37
Serves sixteen (tiny eaters perhaps?)
Baking the layers at 300 degrees F keeps the cake exceptionally moist. Serve it at room temperature; the coconut softens when refrigerated.
For the Cake:
3/4 cup cocoa powder (I use Hershey's)
1 1/2 cups boiling water
6 oz. (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into six pieces
3/4 cup sour cream
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
12 oz. (3 cups) cake flour
3 cups sugar
2 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
For the Frosting:
6 large egg yolks
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup coconut milk
1 to 2 teaspoons coconut extract (or to taste)
1 lb. unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons, softened (but not at all melted)
4 cups large shaved coconut (fresh or desiccated), toasted
TO MAKE THE CAKE:
Heat the oven to 300 degrees F. Line the bottoms of two 9-inch cake pans with kitchen parchment and set them aside (there's no need to grease the pans). Put the cocoa powder in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Pour the boiling water over the cocoa and whisk until smooth. Add the butter and sour cream and blend on low speed until the butter melts. Allow the mixture to cool for a minute if still very hot, and then add the eggs and vanilla and whisk until smooth. Cool for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, sift together the cake flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients a little at a time to the butter mixture, scraping down the sides once or twice. Increase the speed to medium and blend for another 3 minutes. Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake until the center of the cake feels firm and the cake just barely begins to pull away from the sides of the pan, 50 minutes to 1 hour (begin checking after 45 minutes). Remove the cakes from the oven and let cool completely before frosting.
TO MAKE THE FROSTING:
Put the yolks in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and coconut milk. Stir to combine and then bring to a boil. As the mixture heats, begin whipping the eggs on high speed. Boil the coconut milk and sugar until the mixture reaches the soft-ball stage (238 degrees F on a candy thermometer). Remove the mixture from the heat. Stop the mixer and pour a small amount of the syrup into the egg yolks. Quickly beat on high again. Repeat twice more until all the syrup is incorporated. (You can also add the sugar syrup in a steady stream with the mixer on, but be careful not to let it hit the beater or the syrup will be flung to the sides of the bowl where it will harden.) Continue beating until the mixture is cool. Add the coconut extract. With the mixer on medium speed, begin beating in the butter 1 or 2 tablespoons at a time. When the butter is completely incorporated, scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat another 1 minutes.
Use the frosting right away to fill and frost the cooled cake or cover tightly and refrigerate until ready to use. (Bring chilled buttercream to room temperature before using, beating briefly to smooth it, if necessary.) Pat on a generous coating of the shaved toasted coconut over the sides and top and, if you like, between the layers.
Have a great day