Our recipe this week, chosen by Carmen of Carmen Cooks, is the Coconut Tea Cake on pages 194-195 in Dorie’s book, Baking From My Home To Yours. I made these with lemon as suggested in the Playing Around section and I halved the recipe. I used lite canned coconut milk. I omitted the rum and toasted the coconut. How’s that for blunt and to the point?
I made these about three weeks ago. I shared them with my “reality sisters”. I love that term. Some friends and I get together as often as we can on Thursday nights to watch Survivor together. We usually don’t start watching the show until at least 9:30, then we talk and pause the show over and over and it often takes about 2 1/2 hours to watch the one hour program. I always bring goodies to share and so do a couple others. There’s usually 4-5 of us. We are all true blue Survivor fans. Definitely fun times that I’m REALLY going to miss when we move—sistas, you know who you are!
The halved recipe made 12 mini bunts and 12 mini cupcakes. I doused them in a quick powdered sugar glaze that I made. And sprinkled them with some more coconut.
Lemon Coconut Glaze, by Katrina Smith
2 cups powdered sugar
3 tablespoons coconut milk
juice from half a lemon (was about 2 tablespoons)
1/8 teaspoon lemon extract (optional)
Whisk together until smooth and free of lumps. Add the milk last in tablespoonfuls until desired consistency as you might not need all of it.
These were really good. We all liked them. I will make these again for sure sometime, they would be great for a shower or party or even if sometime I’m just not in a chocolate mood. What? It happens. ;)
Great pick, Carmen. Check out the other cakes on the TWD Blogroll.
We had an Ultimate Cheesecake Throwdown with some friends again. You may recall the throwdown we had in February for French Silk Pie. (I lost.) I can take it.
This time we decided on cheesecake. Our fearless judges, a couple of missionaries from our church and my friend, Marina, came ready to give it their all. Did you know it’s hard to get some great pictures when everyone is anxious for the judges to pick a winner so they can all taste it, too? And would you believe I forgot to take a picture of my completed Key Lime Cheesecake? Sigh. Dan and I were originally going to both just do plain cheesecake for the contest, but ultimately decided to each do whatever kind of cheesecake we wanted.
Dan’s cheesecake of choice was White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake, the judges did not know whose was whose.
Dan’s big, beautiful cheesecake had a chocolate crust, a ribbon of raspberry puree throughout and some sliced almonds on the top for some great crunch. Get a look at this---
I know, it looks like he went to the nearest bakery and picked up a cheesecake! He definitely wins for the look of his cheesecake. I’m so not a decorator.
I made my Key Lime Cheesecake the night before as I knew cheesecake takes on more flavor after it sits for a day or so. Here’s my one lame picture of the cake fresh out of the oven. I was happy it was perfectly smooth on top.
I baked the cheesecake in a 10 inch pan, so it was only about an inch thick, but served it with a blueberry compote and some whipped cream with each slice. Whipped cream that I whisked by hand, thank you. ;)
I have to say, this Key Lime Cheesecake is really good. It’s so creamy and is just perfect with the blueberries. I’ve had it before. It was one of the delicious desserts I had at one of Paige’s classes sometime last year. And when Dan and I decided to go with any cheesecake we wanted, I knew this was the one I wanted to make. Did I mention Chef Paige has a new blog? I have a BIG binder stuffed full of all the recipes I’ve gotten from Paige’s classes I’ve taken and they are all just wonderful. If you haven’t yet, check out her new blog.
Here’s the recipe for the throwdown winning recipe. Yep, two out of three went with the Key Lime Cheesecake! But they all had a really hard time deciding. The cheesecake was super creamy, smooth and perfectly tart.
Key Lime Cheesecake with Blueberry Compote, by Paige Vandegrift (I followed the recipe exactly!)
Graham Cracker Crust:
5 oz. graham crackers, finely ground (about 1 1/2 cups crumbs)
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 ounces (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
Line a 9-inch square baking pan with 2 criss-crossed sheets of foil, leaving an overhang. (I baked mine in a traditional 10-inch springform pan and lined the outside of the pan with foil.) Butter or spray the pan. Combine the crust ingredients until well mixed and press into the pan in a compact even layer. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven until just beginning to brown—8 minutes. Cool.
Key Lime Filling:
3 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature (I used the 1/3 less fat kind)
1 cup granulated sugar (Would you believe I was OUT of sugar when I set out to make this late Sunday night—all I could find in the house was some ultrafine sugar-so that is what I used!)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, sifted (or 1 tablespoon cornstarch) I used flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup strained key lime juice (or bottled key lime juice, Nellie & Joe’s is a good brand)
3 eggs, lightly beaten, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
In the bowl of an electric mixer, briefly beat cream cheese to break it up. Beat in the sugar until smooth; scrape the sides. Beat in the flour and salt; scrape the sides. Add the lime juice and vanilla and beat in. Scrape the sides. Beat in the eggs in two or three additions, just until smooth and fully incorporated. Scrape the filling into the prepared pan.
Place the pan on a half-sheet pan and place on the oven rack in a preheated 325 degree oven. Pour in hot water to come up at least half as high as the filling in the pan. Bake until just set—40-45 minutes. (I did mine 40 minutes.) Cool to room temperature (about 2 hours). Chill, uncovered, until cold (at least 2 hours, but cheesecake may be baked a day or two ahead.)
To portion, lift cold cake out of the pan using the overhanging foil (or remove the sides of the springform pan). Cut the cake using a sharp, thin knife dipped in hot water and wiped dry in between cuts.
Serve topped with a spoonful of blueberry compote and some whipped cream.
2 3/4 cups blueberries (about 14 ounces) (I used frozen, thawed)
6 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon lemon juice (I used lime)
4 1/4 teaspoons cornstarch (1/2 ounce)
zest of 1 lime or lemon (I used the zest of three key limes)
Combine the berries with the sugar and citrus juice and let macerate for 30 minutes. Transfer the berries to a saucepan. Dissolve the cornstarch in a small amount of water and add to the berries with the zest. Bring to a boil, stirring gently. Let boil until the juices are clear and very thick—about 30 to 60 seconds. Empty into a bowl and cool to room temperature without stirring. Chill. Makes a generous 2 cups.
*A couple notes I took in class--DO NOT overbeat cheesecake! Flour protects it from curdling. If your cheesecake doesn’t have flour, be sure to bake it in a water bath. Add eggs last—it helps the cheesecake not rise then fall. Once you start adding liquid to the cream cheese, you never get rid of lumps.
And for the record, Dan’s cheesecake was delicious. The two judges who picked the Key Lime said they liked that it was more creamy and true cheesecake-like. White chocolate, raspberry and chocolate crust—GOOD! Thanks for playing, Dan. We’re trying to decide what to do next for a throwdown.
Sorry to stick this in with TWD, it just won’t get done if I don’t do it all in one night.