Coconut-Pineapple Breakfast Cake

I’ve been seriously craving a pina colada or fruity umbrella drink the last few days (probably because it’s about 15 degrees and bitterly windy here in Michigan) and decided instead to do what I always do- bake a cake. I couldn’t find a recipe that entailed exactly what I was looking for, other than on http://www.cooks.com there were a few varieties. There were also a few Martha Stewart recipes on http://www.marthastewart.com. I decided to take their recipe for Coconut-Pineapple Cake and use it as a jumping off point for one of my own. I’m pretty pleased with how it turned out.

I’m actually (believe it or not) getting burnt out on baking my traditional 9″ round layered cakes with whipped frosting and I wanted something the boys could grab quickly in the mornings, and a loaf cake is always great for that. This particular cake is dense but soft and sweet but not at all overly sweet.

This cake tastes AMAZING in the morning with dark, strong coffee, hence the title of “Breakfast Cake”. I quite like the ring of that, don’t you? Try it- I know you’ll love it!

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COCONUT-PINEAPPLE BREAKFAST CAKE

INGREDIENTS:

1 1/2 cups sweetened shredded coconut

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour (make sure it’s been measured and leveled to get an exact amount)

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

1 cup sugar

3 large eggs

1 cup full fat coconut milk

1 can (20 oz) crushed pineapple, drained of liquid

non-stick cooking spray or butter/flour to grease pan

DIRECTIONS:

Turn the oven to 350 degrees; put all of the coconut on a baking sheet and toast in the oven to preference (about 5 min) Grease a 9″ loaf pan and set aside.

Cream the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl on high speed about 4 min. Add in eggs, one at a time, scraping sides of bowl in between each egg.

Reduce speed to low and alternate adding in the coconut milk and flour mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture (so four-milk-flour-milk-flour). Make sure to mix just enough to combine ingredients; do not over mix.

Scrape sides again and use a rubber spatula to fold in crushed pineapple and 1 cup coconut into the bowl

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Pour batter into pan and smooth the top out; sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup toasted coconut on top of batter.

Bake in oven for about 65 minutes, pulling cake out after 30 min and tenting foil on top. Test with a toothpick to make sure it comes out clean and let the cake cool in pan for 10 minutes before transferring to wire rack to cool completely.

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Some Notes:
-Using full fat coconut milk is important (the Lite doesn’t have enough fat in it as a binding agent).
-I overly toast my coconut because I like the flavor of it when it’s almost burnt (hence the darker color). Plenty of people don’t, so if you just want golden or yellow/lightly toasted coconut, check on it after 3 minutes until it’s the color your prefer.
-You DO have to use the foil or it will burn horribly.
-This is NOT a very sweet cake. It’s meant to have a mild taste with a hint of sweetness and the nuttiness of the toasted coconut.
-Save the rest of the can of coconut milk and the pineapple juice from draining the crushed pineapple. It’s great to use for cupcakes, frosting, or if you cook Thai food, it makes a great addition to the “typical” Thai recipes out there.

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