Posts Tagged ‘coconut’
This cake was my baptism into the world of Bon Appetit magazine. And as I’m sure any of its devourers can attest, the surviving sister of Gourmet Magazine offers up some pretty sweet stuff (no pun intended). The January issue names this recipe among its “top desserts of the year,” and while I might not go that far, it is indeed wonderfully decadent and delicious. The cake is moist, fluffy and coconutty, laden with scattered, irregular fragments of Ghirardelli bittersweet chocolate. The top of the cake is an amazing minefield of toasted coconut, gooey chocolate and a creamy coconut glaze. I served it as a coffeecake for a brunch but it could easily have been a dessert course for a fancy dinner party.
And the winner is….. Billy’s Bakery ! Of all the cupcakes I tried during my year in New York City, Billy’s (184 Ninth Ave) are my favorite — particularly their fluffy coconut variety seen here. Their cake has the perfect balance of moisture and crumbliness. The inventive frostings and flavor combinations are rich and creamy but not cloyingly sweet.
As great as Billy’s cupcakes are, I always have to pick up a slice of the famous banana cake — two layers of moist, vanilla-banana cake separated by a layer of whipped cream cheese frosting, which also blankets the entire masterpiece. It’s so tender and delicious! My one criticism is that it could probably use some walnuts tossed in for good measure.
I’ve found that Billy’s is a great place to take a date for an after-dinner treat. (Hint, hint). It’s just a downright warm, friendly place to hang out — and soak up the bakery smells! I also love the 1940s-style ambiance, which co-owners Marc & Wayne say is meant to evoke the “warm feeling of Grandma’s kitchen.”
I don’t know about you, but this time of year I always start craving the tropics — sun, surf, and sweet coconut flavors and smells. Spring Break is quickly approaching! And in celebration of that fact, this key lime coconut cake. (Can you guess where I’m headed for a getaway??)
This cake is dense, moist and citrusy. A sweet lime glaze is poured on top after baking, and it seeps down through the cake adding to the tang. Toasted coconut flakes provide a slightly crunchy texture on the outside and complement the tropical key lime flavor.