This recipe is from Vanessa’s brand new cookbook Creole Kitchen, a collection of mouth-watering Caribbean recipes that bring the sunshine flavours to kitchens across the UK.
Over to Vanessa…
Mont Blanc coconut cake
This is my favourite cake. I have tasted many versions but none ever came close to the one my mum makes. I learned this recipe when I begged her to make it on Sunday afternoons. I can honestly say that this is where I get my passion for coconut.
I have simplified her recipe, but you do need to make a génoise sponge cake.
The génoise gives a light and airy feel that makes it taste like a coconut cloud.
Ingredients (Serves 6)
For the génoise sponge
butter for greasing
4 eggs, separated
1 pinch salt
125g/4 ½ oz/1 cup plain (all-purpose) flour
1 tsp baking powder
125g/4 ½ oz/generous . cup caster
2 pinches grated cinnamon
1 pinch grated nutmeg
1 tbsp rum
For the coconut cream
400ml/14fl oz/1⅔cups coconut milk
1 can (about 400g/14oz) condensed milk
2 tbsp cornflour (cornstarch)
100ml/3 ½ fl oz/scant ½ cup water
1 tbsp rum
grated zest of 1 lime
glace cherries (optional)
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4. Grease and line a 24cm/9 ½ in round cake tin.
First make the sponge cake. In a mixing bowl, beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff peaks form. Sift the flour and baking powder into another mixing bowl.
When the egg whites are stiff, add the sugar and carry on whisking. Once the mixture is firm, add the egg yolks, whisking continuously. Still whisking, add the flour and the spices and carry on whisking for another 2–3 minutes. Pour the batter into the prepared tin and place in the oven for 20–25 minutes, until well risen, with a nice golden top.
Remove the cake from the oven and leave to cool in its tin. To make the coconut cream, pour the coconut milk, condensed milk, cornflour and water in a saucepan and simmer for a few minutes, stirring constantly, until thick and creamy. Add the rum and lime zest and leave to cool.
When the cake is cool, turn it out onto a piece of greaseproof (wax) paper. Slice it in half horizontally, with the cut sides facing up. Sprinkle some rum over the cut sides. Spread some of the coconut cream evenly over both sides, then sandwich them together. Spread the remaining coconut cream over the top of the cake and all around the sides.
To decorate, break open the coconut and scoop out the meat. Peel and discard the brown skin. Wash the coconut meat under cold water and then grate it finely. Sprinkle the coconut all over the cake until completely covered.
Scatter glace cherries on top, if wished. Place it in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours before serving.
This recipe is from Vanessa Bolosier’s Creole Kitchen, published by Pavilion Books. Photo credit: Clare Winfield. Out Now.