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Lime and coconut layer cake

Tangy limes mixed with creamy coconut give this cake a tropical flavour to whisk you off to sunnier days

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  • Serves 10 to 12

  • Prep time 45 mins

  • Cooking time 30 mins

  • Total time 1 hr 15 mins

Ingredients

  • 225g (8oz) unsalted butter, softened
  • 250g (9oz) caster sugar
  • 4 large free-range eggs, lightly beaten
  • 225g (8oz) self-raising flour
  • ¼tsp baking powder
  • 75g (3oz) desiccated coconut
  • finely grated zest and juice 
3 limes
for the filling
  • 100g (4oz) unsalted butter, softened
  • 250g (9oz) cream cheese
  • 3tbsp creamed coconut (leave somewhere cool so the oil separates to the top; remove and use the cream underneath)
  • ½tsp vanilla extract
  • 400g (14oz) icing sugar, sifted
  • zest and juice 1 lime
to decorate
  • 200g (7oz) fresh coconut chunks, finely sliced
  • zest 1 lime
you will need
  • 3 x 20cm (8in) cake tins, lightly greased and the bases lined with baking parchment

Tip

You can substitute the sliced coconut chunks with lightly toasted desiccated coconut. Press it on to the edges of the cake with a palette knife.

Preparation

  1. Heat the oven to 170C, 150C fan, 325F, gas 3. To make the cakes, using an electric mixer, whisk the butter and sugar until light, pale and creamy. Now, very gradually, beat in the eggs, mixing well after each addition.

  2. Sift the flour and baking powder into the mixture, add the desiccated coconut and fold in gently until thoroughly incorporated. If it seems too thick, add a few tbsp milk. Now fold in the lime zest and juice.

  3. Divide the mixture evenly among the 3 tins, level it out with a palette knife and bake in the oven for 20 to 30 minutes or until springy and cooked through.

  4. Allow the cakes to cool slightly before removing from the tins and taking off the baking parchment, then leave to cool completely on a wire rack.

  5. Toast the coconut slices: arrange in a single layer on a lined baking sheet and toast in a hot oven for 10 minutes, or until golden. Keep an eye on them, as they will burn quickly.

  6. To make the filling, beat the butter, cream cheese, creamed coconut and vanilla until smooth, then gradually beat in the icing sugar until well incorporated. Then beat in the lime zest and juice.

  7. To assemble the cake, spread some of the frosting on top of the base layer of the cake then top with the next layer and repeat the process with all layers. Cover the whole cake with the remainder of the mix and smooth with a palette knife. Gently press the toasted coconut shavings on the sides of the cake, and finish with a sprinkling 
of lime zest on top.