*** Enjoy two popular cake recipes from a famous chef: carrot cake and coconut cake!
From Denny: We enjoy Bobby Flay's Food Network show Throwdown at our house and were watching this one about two of favorite cakes: carrot cake and coconut cake. Chef Flay doesn't have embeddable clips or a video clip from this particular show which was a really good one.
Like a lot of other people I went looking for a link to the chef's site to order the beautiful tall 12-layer carrot cake that was Bobby's competition when he challenged him in South Carolina. So far no luck on that one. In fact, all there was on Food Network were these two recipes but what outstanding recipes they are to enjoy! These two cakes will satisfy your creative side and deliver some seriously tasty treats to friends and family.
Carrot Cake with Marshmallow Fluff Cream Cheese Frosting
From: Bobby Flay
Prep Time: 1 hr 15 min
Inactive Prep Time: 2 hr 0 min
Cook Time: 15 min
Serves: 1 (8-inch) cake, about 10 servings
1/4 cup melted unsalted butter, cooled, plus more for buttering pan
1 cup crushed pineapple, drained
3 large eggs
1/2 cup canola oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 pound carrots, peeled and grated on the small holes of the grater (about 3 cups, lightly packed)
2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups organic cane sugar
1/2 cup lightly packed brown muscavado sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup finely diced crystallized ginger
3/4 cup coarsely chopped toasted pecans
Cream Cheese Marshmallow Frosting, recipe follows
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour 2 (8-inch) round cake pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper. Butter the parchment well too.
Pulse the pineapple in a food processor fitted with a metal blade until it is finely chopped. Put the eggs in a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat the eggs for 10 seconds. Add the oil, 1/4 cup melted butter, vanilla, carrots, chopped pineapple and grated fresh ginger and mix until combined.
Whisk together the flour, sugars, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and salt in a bowl until combined. Add the wet ingredients and beat on low speed just until combined. Remove and fold in the crystallized ginger and pecans. Divide the batter between the 2 pans.
Bake until the tops are a very golden brown and a tester inserted in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs, 40 to 55 minutes. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 15 minutes, then invert them onto a wire rack and let them cool completely. Remove the parchment from the bottoms of each cake. Cool completely before frosting.
Cream Cheese Marshmallow Frosting
3 tablespoons water
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 vanilla bean, seeds scraped and reserved
2 large egg whites
Pinch cream of tartar
8 ounces cream cheese, slightly softened
1 stick unsalted butter, slightly softened
1 pound organic powdered sugar, sifted twice
2 cups Fluff
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
In a small saucepan fitted with a candy thermometer, bring the water, corn syrup, 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar and vanilla bean to 246 degrees F. Before adding the syrup to the egg whites below, carefully remove the vanilla bean.
In the meantime, in a completely clean, dry mixing bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites, salt and cream of tartar until creamy and foamy, about 2 minutes. Still whisking, sprinkle in the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar and continue to whisk until the whites hold very soft peaks, about 2 minutes. While mixing on slow speed, carefully drizzle in the hot syrup. Turn the mixer to high and whisk until thick, fluffy and just warm, about 7 minutes. Turn the mixer to low and whisk in the reserved vanilla seeds. Scrape the fluff into a bowl. Wash the bowl and whisk and return them to the machine.
Combine the cream cheese and butter in the bowl of the mixer and mix until light and fluffy. Add the powdered sugar and mix on low until combined. Increase the speed and whip until light and fluffy. Add about 2 cups of Fluff and the vanilla and whip until combined. Refrigerate for 15 minutes if too soft to use as frosting.
Throwdown's Toasted Coconut Cake with Coconut Filling and Coconut Buttercream
From: Bobby Flay, 2008
Prep Time: 1 hr 0 min
Inactive Prep Time: 4 hr 30 min
Cook Time: 1 hr 5 min
Serves: 8 servings
2 cups sweetened flaked coconut
Coconut Simple Syrup:
1 1/2 cups water
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
3/4 cup sweetened flaked coconut
3/4 cup whole milk
3/4 cup unsweetened coconut milk
1/2 vanilla bean, seeds scraped
4 large egg yolks
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 teaspoons coconut rum (recommended: Malibu)
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup coconut custard (recipe above), cold
3/4 cup very cold heavy cream
Coconut Buttercream Frosting:
3 stick unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup confectioners' sugar
3/4 cup coconut custard (recipe above) (cold)
Pinch fine sea salt
2 tablespoons softened butter, for pans
2 1/4 cups cake flour, plus more for pans
1 cup whole milk, at room temperature
6 large egg whites, at room temperature
1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 12 pieces, slightly cold
Directions for the toasted coconut:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
Spread the coconut evenly onto a baking sheet and toast until lightly golden brown, stirring once, 8 to 10 minutes. Turn off the oven and let the coconut sit in the oven until very dry and crunchy, about 15 minutes longer.
For the simple syrup:
Bring water and sugar to a boil. Stir in the coconut, remove from the heat and let sit for at least 30 minutes and up to 4 hours. Strain the liquid into a clean saucepan, bring to a boil and let cook until the mixture is slightly reduced, about 5 minutes. Let cool.
For the custard:
Combine the milks and vanilla bean and seeds in a medium nonreactive saucepan and bring to a simmer over low heat.
Whisk together the yolks, sugar and cornstarch in a large bowl. Slowly whisk the warm milk into the egg mixture then return the mixture to the pot over medium heat and bring to a boil, whisking constantly, until thickened. Scrape the mixture into a bowl and whisk in the rum and vanilla extract. Let cool to room temperature then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold, at least 2 hours.
For the filling:
Combine the custard and cream in a bowl and whip until soft peaks form.
For the buttercream:
Beat the butter and sugar in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add the coconut custard and salt and beat until combined and smooth.
For the cake:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour 2 (9 by 2-inch) round cake pans and line bottoms with parchment paper.
Whisk together the milk, egg whites, vanilla bean seeds and vanilla extract in a medium bowl.
In the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. With mixer running at low speed, add the butter, one piece at a time and continue beating until mixture resembles moist crumbs. Add all but 1/2 cup of milk mixture to crumbs and beat at medium speed until the mixture is pale and fluffy, about 1 1/2 minutes. With mixer on low speed, add remaining 1/2 cup of the milk mixture, increase speed to medium and beat 30 seconds more. Scrape sides of bowl and mix for 20 seconds longer. Divide the batter evenly between the cakes pan and smooth the tops using a rubber spatula.
Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few crumbs attached, 22 to 24 minutes. Cool in the pan on baking rack for 10 minutes. Run a small knife around the side of the pan and invert cakes onto the baking rack, removing parchment paper, and let cool completely, about 45 minutes.
Using a long serrated knife, slice each cake horizontally into 2 layers. Reserve 1 of the flat bottom layers for the top of the cake. Place another layer on a cardboard round cut side up and brush with some of the coconut simple syrup. Spoon 1/3 of the coconut filling onto the cake and using a small offset metal spatula, spread it into an even layer, leaving a 1/2-inch border around the edge of the cake. Repeat with 2 more layers. Brush the cut side of the reserved cake layer with the remaining syrup. Place the layer cut side down on top of the cake.
Frost the sides and top of the cake with the buttercream. Pat the coconut onto the sides of the cake and sprinkle the remaining coconut on the top of the cake.
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