Coconut and White Chocolate Cake
Just love my weekends, the weekdays are so busy with work and I’m an extrovert who enjoys other people’s company. So when the weekend comes around I love to spend time with my family, friends and socialising. Throw in a celebration and I’m in heaven. My nephew’s Bar mitzvah was last weekend and we started the celebrations on Friday night with a beautiful meal and music and of course a celebratory cake to complete the meal.
What would a Jewish celebration be without speeches? There were plenty and as always, if I was judging a Toastmasters competition, it would have been a tough field. Just as well I wasn’t in the running. Still, I wanted to say a few words about my beautiful nephew, so this is my after-the-event speech. Jesse, Friday night was a beautiful occasion, full of love, with people who adore you, great food and, of course, music (great work on the keys, by the way). For your special night, I chose to make an all-white chocolate/coconut cake. The white represents not only the innocence of your youth that you will be leaving behind, but the kind we don’t see so much these days. The way you engage and interact with your young cousins, not caring if it’s cool or uncool because you let your heart lead. The way you will stop what you’re doing to help anyone who needs help (especially with their phone) never wanting anything in return. You are a wide-eyed, super smart-boy who always looks at things positively and is able to think outside the square. That's why I chose no ordinary sponge cake for you but one that is unique like you are. This almond-filled sponge is covered in a thick layer of white chocolate and coconut mousse like the love and protection in which you have been sheltered so far. And according to our faith, as you begin the transition from boy to man on this wild ride called life your curiosity expands as you become more independent. which means you will have many different experiences. Some may not be so smooth like the sweet, velvety layers of white chocolate mousse, which is why the bottom layer of the cake is decorated with dark-chocolate-covered nuts, because growing pains can be filled with bittersweet moments and life is a bumpy ride. But I’m sure that with all of your special gifts and the wonderful family that surrounds you, you will transform that ride into a marvellous journey whether the bumps and potholes are few or many. Jesse, my love, as you become the man you are destined to be, I wish you a lifetime of happiness love, and laughter. Love you lots Nava xx
Please note I made two cakes so I could have a four-layered cake and I doubled the mousse ingredients to have enough for the four layers and to cover the cake
Coconut and white chocolate mousse
150g white chocolate
300mls thickened cream
2/3 cup of coconut milk
1/3 cup fine desiccated coconut
170g coconut yoghurt
1 tablespoons gelatine
2 tablespoons hot water
3/4 cup almond meal toasted
3/4 cup sugar
5 large eggs room temp
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup plain flour
Pinch of salt
Coconut and white chocolate mousse
Whip coconut milk and thickened cream together until firm, set aside.
Melt white chocolate either in the microwave or in a heatproof dish over a pot half full with hot but not boiling water.
Stir chocolate for a minute to cool down a bit before stirring it into whipped cream. Add desiccated coconut and yoghurt and fold in until smooth.
Dissolve gelatine in hot water and stir until well combined and there are no lumps and stir into cream mixture. Put in the fridge to set. for 2-3 hours or overnight.
Preheat the oven to 180c.
Divide sugar in half. In a bowl with an electric mixer whisk egg yolks with half the sugar, until nice and thick. While still whipping add lemon zest and vanilla extract.
In a separate bowl, sprinkle salt on egg white and whisk on medium speed until white in colour. Increase speed to high and spoon in remaining sugar one tablespoon at a time, until egg whites are stiff.
Fold egg-yolk mixture into the whipped egg white. Sprinkle almond meal on top of egg mixture then sift flour on top of almond meal. Fold everything together gently but quickly. Pour into a baking tin lined with baking paper and bake for 25-30 min or until the cake has risen, is golden in colour and when a skewer is inserted in the middle it comes out clean.
Remove cake from the tin on a wire rack and let cool.
Once the cake has completely cooled down to room temperature, cut in half and spread 1/3 of mousse mixture on top of the bottom half of the cake. Place the second half of the cake on top of the mousse and cover cake with remaining mousse.
To decorate, I made whipped cream and using a piping bag created individual flower designs and put Raffaello chocolate balls on top.
PS - I love hearing from you! Let me know how it went and feel free to spread the word/passion/love, the more the merrier!