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Friday, April 12, 2013

Coconut Buttermilk Pound Cake

Forever on the look out for new recipes I came across this one for Buttermilk Coconut Pound Cake.  Being an avid fan of anything coconut I just had to try it out and this was the initial reason for the purchase of the liter of buttermilk.  You may recall that the overabundance of buttermilk lead to the discovery of the Lemon Scone recipe.

Pound Cake refers to a type of cake traditionally made with a pound
each of four ingredients being flour, butter, eggs and sugar.  Sounds like you end up with a lot of cake.

While the pound cakes made today often have different proportions of ingredients from the original they can still be wonderfully rich, moist and buttery with a lovely golden brown crust.

Pound cake can offer the perfect little slice when all you crave is a simple piece of cake but can also be deliciously dressed up for any occasion by serving with berries, whipped cream, ice cream or any other favourite topping.

It pays to have one or two loaves ready in the freezer for those visitors who may show up at your doorstep for an unscheduled coffee date.   Slicing it from the frozen state makes it easier to thaw out by the time coffee is ready to be served. The loaf can also be sliced before freezing making things a little easier, a small piece of wax paper placed in between the slices will keep them separate.

If you share my love for the taste and texture of coconut along with the richness and tang of buttermilk you might want to give this one a try.

The sweet buttermilk glaze and sprinkle of toasted coconut on top is the crowning glory of this delicious cake!

Coconut Buttermilk Pound Cake
¾ cups unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 ¼ cups toasted coconut
  1. Toast coconut in a 350 degree F. oven for 5 to 10 minutes, stirring often.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  3. Butter and flour a 4 ½ by 8 ½ inch loaf pan.
  4. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl.
  5. In a separate bowl beat together with a mixer butter, granulated sugar and vanilla on medium- high until light and fluffy.
  6. Add eggs one at a time beating well and scraping down bowl as needed.
  7. With mixer on low add flour mixture in 3 additions with 2 equal additions of the buttermilk and beat until well combined.
  8. Fold in the 1 ¼ cups of toasted coconut and transfer batter into prepared pan.
  9. Bake until a skewer inserted in center comes out with a few moist crumbs attached, 60 minutes.
  10. Cool in pan about 1 hour then remove from pan and cool completely on rack.
  11. Store at room temperature, wrapped in plastic, up to 4 days.
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 to 3 tablespoons buttermilk
¼ cup toasted coconut
  1. Wisk together confectioners’ sugar, add buttermilk until the consistency of a runny glaze.
  2. Drizzle over cake and sprinkle with ¼ cup toasted coconut.

Notes, Tips and Suggestions
  • Keep a close eye on coconut while toasting as it can go from browned to burned before you know it.
  • Allow glaze to harden before storing or freezing.
  • Freezes very well.

Not Such a Hard Nut to Crack After All

I seriously enjoy coconut, dried or still in the shell.  My father used to crack one open for us now and then and I would intently watch him hoping one day to be able to do it for myself.  I was intimidated by the drill he used for making holes in the three little dimples at the end of one side of the coconut.  He would let the coconut water drain into a bowl then whack it a few times with a hammer cracking it wide open.

He gave me  a little hammer one day to place in a small tool box I had put together for myself. This little hammer has become a tool full of memories for me.  Not only do I use it occasionally to hammer in a nail or two but it's great for cracking open coconuts as well.

Still intimidated by the thought of using a drill I have found a method that works just as well.

Hold the coconut in the palm of one hand and make sure you place a bowl just under your hand to catch the coconut water.  Begin whacking the coconut around the middle or its "equator" giving the coconut a bit of a turn as you continue hitting it with the hammer.  Do this until the coconut breaks in half. You may get a little debris from the shell in the water which can easily be strained out with a fine mesh sieve.  With a small paring knife pry the coconut meat away from the shell, slice and store the coconut slices in the water in the refrigerator.  I've read that placing the coconut halves in the freezer for about 15 minutes loosens it from the shell and is easier to remove.

If you haven't yet but decide to buy a coconut an some point I suggest you use it right after purchasing since it quickly begins to deteriorate on the inside even if the outer shell still looks good. I am speaking from experience.

My little hammer goes missing once in a while and I go on the hunt for it until it's found.  Seems there's someone else in the kitchen that has taken a liking to my favourite little tool.


  1. e with a coconut for a head...April 16, 2013 at 7:25 PM

    This is a very funny post! Is that true about the origins of pound cake? Sounds kind of gross with the pound of butter and eggs? Or maybe it would be that much more delicious?

    I didn't know Nonna gave you that little hammer and I can guess who the silent thief is in your house! I have to say, hammer or no hammer, I don't see me cracking a coconut in the near future unless it's my head against one of my cupboards (an almost daily occurrence).

    Oh yea, and this cake is AWESOME! It's that buttermilk, I tell you!

  2. (a pound) of butter fingersApril 16, 2013 at 7:26 PM

    And by Nonna I obviously mean Nonno. Or Ninja? ;)

  3. Life is short...experience cracking open a coconut!

  4. Wow, just made this today and it is really amazing. I'm not even that crazy for coconut but the toasted coconut gives it an awesome flavor. Try it everyone.