OMG!  If you all listen to our morning show, you are likely aware that coconut is one of my favorite things on this planet.  And, this morning in What's Cookin'?, Patty Millay is ringing and baking in the New Year with a coconut-inspired recipe.  Check this out!    It's her recipe for Italian Pecan Cream Cake.  HAPPY 2018!!

From Patty:

I won a cake at a charity event last year and it was the most delicious thing I've ever tasted.  I have no idea who made it but I never spent $10.00 for anything better!  I've been searching around for some time for a recipe that I thought was close to the original thing,  I think this is pretty close.  Tomorrow is the Hubs birthday and I wanted to make something extra special for him this year. 

This cake is the real deal - sifting, measuring, separating eggs - the whole nine yards but some days you just want to get to basics and do it right!  Happy Birthday Honey!!!



Photo by Patty Millay
Photo by Patty Millay
Batter Mix
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
⅛ teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
½ cup vegetable shortening
2 cups granulated sugar
5 large eggs, separated
1 cup shredded or flaked sweetened coconut
1 cup toasted pecans, coarsely chopped
Pecan Cream Cheese Frosting
11 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2 tablespoons milk (preferably whole milk)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 cups confectioners (powdered) sugar
1 cup toasted pecans, coarsely chopped
Batter Mix
  1. In a medium mixing bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt together, sift or whisk together to mix. Set aside.
  2. In a small mixing bowl, stir the buttermilk and vanilla together. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter, shortening, and sugar until light and fluffy. Tip: To cream, start by placing the butter and shortening in the bowl, with an electric mixer on medium speed begin by beating the butter and shortening about 1 minute until it is smooth and light in color. With the mixer still on medium speed, slowly add the sugar to the butter mixture, either one tablespoon at a time, or in a very slow steady stream, taking from 4 to 8 minutes to add all of the sugar, and beating until the butter and sugar are fully incorporated and the mixture is a light, or pale yellow color, with a fluffy texture. While adding the sugar, stop the mixer occasionally to scrape the mixture off the paddle and scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula so the mixture blends evenly.
  4. Add egg yolks one at a time, beating until thoroughly mixed. Each egg yolk should be fully incorporated into the mixture before adding the next egg yolk, taking about one minute to blend in each egg yolk.
  5. With the mixer on low speed, add about one third of the flour mixture, mix just until the flour is almost completely blended. Scrape the bowl down, and add about one half of the buttermilk mixture, blending just until mixed. Scrape the bowl down again and continue alternating with the flour mixture and buttermilk mixture, ending with the last portion of the flour, and stirring just until blended.
  6. In a medium mixing bowl and using clean beaters, beat egg whites with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form. Using a balloon type whisk or large rubber spatula, gently fold the beaten egg whites into the batter, and then fold the coconut and pecans into the batter.
  7. Spoon the batter into the prepared pans and smooth the surface with the back of a large spoon. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until a long toothpick, wooden skewer, or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and place pans on a wire cooling rack to cool for 10 to 15 minutes then remove cake from the pans and place the cake on the wire cooling rack to finish cooling.
Pecan Cream Cheese Frosting
In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese and butter; beat together until mixture is smooth. Add milk, vanilla, and powdered sugar; beat until frosting is smooth and creamy. Stir in pecans. Using an offset spatula, spread frosting between layers and over top and sides of cake.
Cover frosted cake and refrigerate until ready to serve. Refrigerate Leftovers
Preheat oven to 350*. Prepare three 9-inch round layer cake pans - spray pans liberally with baking spray.


What's Cookin'? is sponsored each and every week by Murphy Appliance Company in Owensboro.

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