I woke up one morning about two weeks ago feeling very slow, one would say I was 'under the weather'.So I decide to call a very good friend of mine and she was also kinda slow, now how does that help. I stay calm and we tried to talk but still no change….awkward silence then the bulb lights up. We both agree it’s a great plan and schedule a date.
Let me ask you a question, how do you cheer up two people who are under the weather and don’t know what to do to themselves? What do you think we came up with? My answer for you is “you get on top of that lousy ‘weather’”, not literally though…
Our way of getting 'on top of the weather' was to bake ourselves a pretty, cute and bright cloud. Yeah how the heck do you bake a cloud? Wait for it… We bake a ‘COCONUT CLOUD CAKE’. Yes I said it ‘Coconut Cloud Cake’ this cake is so white, light, sweeeet and a flavourful dessert filled and topped with a seven-minute frosting. It felt like a little piece of Heaven had just dropped in our mouths.
In the end the fun part was in the baking, oh yeah and the sugar high was just amazing. I was very pleased with myself for being able to cheer my friend up.
WARNING THIS CAKE WILL IS VERY SWEET AND I WILL NOT BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY ‘DAMAGE’ CAUSED DURING SUGAR HIGH! HEHE, But once in a while you take a trip on the wild side :D.
NB: PLEASE MEASURE ALL INGREDIENTS NO GUESS WORK HERE ELSE NO CLOUD FOR YOU!!!
Coconut Cloud Cake
For the cake:
- 1 cup sifted cake flour
- 1 1/2 cups superfine sugar1
- 1 ¾ cups Egg whites, room temperature (this should amount to 10-14 eggs depending on their size, but try hard to hit the 1 ¾ mark)
- 1 tablespoon warm water
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar2
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (In Ghana we called vanilla essence)
For the seven-minute frosting:
- 3 large egg whites
- 1 1/4 cups sugar (ordinary)
- 5 tablespoons cold water
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the topping:
- 3 to 4 cups flaked coconut (If you like a lot of coconut that’s fine but I used a little less than 2 cups)
This is the coconut am talking about, not the one the boys sell on the 'trock'.
- Preheat the oven to 176 degrees Celsius (350 degrees Fahrenheit) . With a fine sieve, sift flour four times and add 3/4 cups superfine sugar. Mix it with a dry wooden spoon.
- In a clean plastic bowl and a hand held mixer on medium speed, beat together egg whites and water until foamy. Add salt, cream of tartar, and vanilla; beat until soft peaks form. Increase speed to medium-high and sprinkle in remaining sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time. Beat until stiff but not dry. See notes for beating eggs3
- Transfer to a large bowl. In six additions, add dry ingredients over meringue (the sugar-egg mixture in step 2), folding in quickly but gently. Batter may not seem like the usual cake batter but no worries. If you do the sugar-egg mixture right you won’t need extra flour, but if you think it’s too eggy and you want to add a little more flour then it shouldn't be too much just a ¼ - ½ cup will do.
- Lightly grease 10-inch tube pan and place in parchment paper making it extend up from sides of pan just a little bit. Pour batter into pan. Smooth top with an offset spatula. Run a knife through batter to release air bubbles. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until golden brown and springy to touch.
- Let cool completely, about 30 minutes. To remove cake run knife at the edges to separate cake from pan now carefully lift cake by pulling out parchment paper. Allow to cool in cake stand.
Make the frosting:
- In the heatproof bowl of an electric mixer set over a saucepan of simmering water, combine egg whites, sugar, water, and cream of tartar. Cook over medium heat, whisking frequently, until sugar is dissolved and mixture is foamy, about 5 minutes.
- Attach the bowl to a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat the mixture on high speed until glossy and voluminous, about 7 minutes. Beat in the vanilla.
- Carefully run a long offset spatula or knife around the inner and outer perimeter of the cake pan to release cake.
- Place on a plate, bottom side up. Using a long serrated knife, carefully slice off 1 1/2 inches from the top of the cake, being sure not to break the layer. Set aside. Cut out a 1-inch-wide, 1-inch-deep channel (longitudinally) halfway between the center and edge of cake. Spread icing into channel and over entire layer. Sprinkle with coconut.
- Gently place reserved layer on top and ice with remaining frosting. Sprinkle with coconut and serve immediately.
1 You don’t need to buy superfine or confectioners sugar, just blend ordinary sugar in a food processor or mill. If you want confectioners sugar grind till it’s powdery for superfine sugar don'y wait till it’s powdery. Do it in small batches you get better control
2 We are using a lot of eggs so we will need something to stabilizer them and make it smooth and it also serves as a leavening agent. For those in my part of the world, Ghana – Accra/Kumasi, you can get some at the Qwik Pik at Osu, Max Mart, Koala or the Accra Mall; Nadville - Kumasi. I had a hard time getting some so a friend in the baking community was very generous and gave me some.
3 Room temperature eggs give the most volume. The first stage of beating eggs is the foamy stage; you’d know when it gets there. The second stage is the soft peak stage, this is when the egg mounds but no sharp tips form when whisk is taken out. The third stage is the stiff stage, this is when the egg mounds and sharp tips are form when whisk is taken out. Check regularly each stage so you don’t over beat the eggs. Over beaten eggs cannot be restored because they curdle and become dry so you’ll have to start again with fresh eggs, please avoid that. If you over beat it and still use it you won’t get your ‘cloud’.
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