Chiffon cakes are light but sturdy and layer so perfectly with fillings since they don't collapse under weight like a Angel Food Cake does.
The scent of the cake in the oven will almost make you feel like you are in the tropics.
This cake can be made a day ahead of your party as long as you use stabilizer in your whipping cream.
- 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons cake and pastry flour
- 1 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsweetened coconut
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 8 large eggs, separated and the whites put into a freshly washed metal or glass large bowl
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 tablespoon coconut rum (optional)
- 1 teaspoon coconut extract
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Preheat oven to 325.
- Prepare 2 - 9 inch and 1 3/4 inch high sided pans by cutting out rounds of parchment paper and placing them in the bottom of each pan. Do not grease the pans. Chiffon cake batter needs to be able to climb the sides of the pans. The cakes will rise past the top but not run over as long as you do not grease the sides. Alternately, you could bake them in three 8 inch pans and adjust the baking time.
- Combine the first four dry ingredients together in a large bowl and then run them through a fine sieve three times to combine them well and lighten them.
- Add the coconut and make a well in the middle and add in the egg yolks, oil, water, coconut rum, and coconut and vanilla extract. Beat together to combine.
- Beat the egg whites and the 1/4 cup sugar until stiff peaks form. You should be able to tip your bowl upside down and the egg whites will stay put.
- Add about 1 cup of beaten egg whites to your batter and beat with a wooden spoon to blend it in. Repeat this once more. Now the batter should be light enough for you to fold in the remaining egg whites carefully without deflating the whites.
- Divide the batter between the pans and bake for about 35 minutes or until a toothpick tests clean.
- Remove from oven and let cool 10 minutes before removing the cakes to wire racks to fully cool.
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
- 4 egg yolks
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon coconut rum or 1 teaspoon coconut extract
- 1/2 cup fine unsweetened coconut
- 1 tablespoon butter
- Combine the cornstarch and the sugar and stir in egg yolks.
- Add the two milks and the coconut rum (if use rather use the extract add it after cooking) and stir well to combine.
- Either bring the mixture to a simmer in the microwave, stirring at 30 second intervals or stir constantly over medium heat until the custard thickens and comes to a light boil.
- Remove from heat and add the coconut, and the butter.
- Stir for 5 minutes and spread over three of the split layers of cake.
Whipped Cream Frosting
- 2 1/2 cups whipping cream
- 2 packets whipping cream stabilizer or two tablespoons dream whip
- 1/2 teaspoon coconut extract
- Whip the cream, extract and stabilizer until firm peaks form. (you do not need sugar since the coconut is sweet). Be careful not to beat your whipping cream until it is no longer smooth. Watch it carefully. It should be firm and it can change in a few seconds so don't walk away from your mixer if it is on a stand.
- 1 1/2 cups shredded sweetened coconut
- Once the cake layers have cooled. Split each layer in half and spread the still warm custard over three layers. Reserve one bottom of the cake for the top.
- Allow the custard to set 30 minutes on each layer before stacking layers onto a large cake plate.
- Spread the whipped cream over the sides and the top and then sprinkle coconut over the sides the cake always starting at the bottom by cupping the coconut in the palm of your hand. Work your way up to the top. Once the sides are evenly coated with coconut, take the bits that have fallen onto your counter and put it on the top of the cake, finishing with additional coconut if needed.
- Refrigerate until you are ready to serve. Cover with plastic wrap if you are using it the next day.