A wonderful going away party treat for my dear, Texas bound friend. . . Via The Violet Bakery Cookbook.
For the coconut pudding
- 200 g (3/4 cup plus 2 tbsp) coconut milk
- 50 g (1/4 cup) sugar
- 1/4 vanilla pod, seeds scraped out
- 40 g (3 tbsp) water
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- 1 tbsp water, for dissolving cornstarch
- a pinch of salt
- 1 teaspoon white rum
For the chiffon sponge
- 160 g (1 cup plus 2 tbsp) all purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 150 g (3/4 cup) sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 65 g (5 tbsp) vegetable oil, plus more for greasing the pan
- 6 egg yolks
- 65 g (1/4 cup) water
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- a few grates nutmeg
- 5 egg whites
- 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
For the coconut soak
- 200 g (3/4 cup plus 2 tbsp) coconut milk, well shaken
- 200 g (2/3 cup) sweetened condensed milk
For the whipped cream topping
- 1 litre (1 quart) whipping cream
- 50 g (1/3 cup) shredded coconut, toasted or untoasted, for sprinkling on top [I used sweetened shredded coconut, and did toast it, for around 5-10 mins at 350 degrees; watch it so it doesn’t burn.]
- First, prepare the coconut pudding. Put the coconut milk, sugar, vanilla pod and water into a saucepan. Place over moderate heat, stir to dissolve the sugar and then turn up the heat to high. In a separate bowl, combine the cornstarch and water, then add to the pan along with the salt, and whisk until thick. This shoudl take about 10-15 minutes. [For me, this process didn’t work AT ALL. It turned into a gluey paste. After some internet research, I instead only cooked the pudding for about 5 minutes post-cornstarch, then I felt the consistency was right.]
- Once the pudding is ready, pour it into a container and leave to cool for about 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, remove the vanilla pod and add the rum. Press a piece of plastic wrap on the surface to cool, then put in the fridge to chill for at least 4 hours so it sets into the consistency of a creamy pudding.
- Preheat the oven to 300 F. Grease ONLY the bottom of a rectangular cake pan (9×13) with oil and cut a piece of parchment paper to fit the bottom. Do not grease the sides, as you want the cake to gently adhere to the sides of the pan so that it does not sink into itself as it cools.
- To make the chiffon, sift the flour and baking powder together into a bowl, then whisk in half of the sugar and the salt, and set aside. In another bowl, whisk together the oil, egg yolks, water, vanilla, and nutmeg. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and gradually add the wet ones, whisking to form a paste and then a batter (much like a pancake batter).
- Meanwhile, in the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the egg whites, the remaining sugar, and the cream of tartar. Whisk up into firm, meringue-like peaks. Stir a third of this into the chiffon batter and then gently fold in the rest of the whites. Pour into your prepared pan and bake until set, golden and springy to the touch. Leave to cool in the pan. [No bake time?! After some googling, I would recommend checking it about 45 mins in. Mine took about 50-55 mins.]
- While the cake is cooling, prepare the coconut soak. Whisk the ingredients together, then pierce holes in the sponge with a skewer and drizzle over the cake in its pan. [Now, I didn’t know what to do here, since there’s parchment paper under the cake, and no one wants to eat that by accident. So I flipped the cake out of the pan, took off the paper, then flipped the cake back into the pan. I would do this by turning it onto and off of a cooling rack. I did it poorly, with just my arms, and cracked my cake half way through, but since it’s being covered and is a trifle, no one could tell…]
- Spread chilled pudding in a layer on top of the soaked sponge, pushing it into the corners with the back of a spoon or an icing spatula. Place the whole cake in the fridge.
- Lightly whip the cream for the topping. [I added sugar as whipping based on the instructions on the heavy cream container.] Remove the cake from the fridge and cover with the lightly whipped cream, then sprinkle with the plain or toasted coconut. (If you do toast the coconut, make sure you let it cool completely before putting it on top of the cream.)
- Serve right away or chill until ready to serve.