Before we moved from Virginia to Ohio, my husband and son had a pending baking date that took a back seat to packing and preparing to relocate. They were supposed to bake a cake or some cookies together, and my preteen has been rather upset that his Step-Dad hadn't delivered on this promise yet. We've been so busy trying to settle into our new home and a whole new routine that we honestly just plain forgot all about this baking date. (Parenting FAIL, I know!)
You see, my husband loves to bake. He can't cook actual meals to save his life, but the man can make some killer desserts! He actually made a huge batch of cookies for my OBGYN and the entire maternity ward staff when we went to deliver our youngest child, Xander. (Yep, I got some extra special treatment during our stay in the hospital!)
So when I heard that Cool Whip came out with a brand new frosting, I knew it was finally time for the boys to get some baking done together. Sure, this decision was partially out of greed since I simply had to try Cool Whip Frosting! Who doesn't love Cool Whip, after all?! But no one seemed to complain, and they were actually more eager than I was to rush to the store and get started.
Before we headed to the store, we had to decide on what my guys would create. We finally decided on....
Decadent Coconut Cream Cake With Cool Whip Frosting
We loaded everyone up and headed to Walmart to grab everything we needed. I love living in my town because they just finished transforming the local Walmart into a SuperCenter! This means I can grab everything I need 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and the drive is less than 5 minutes from my house.
The first thing we looked for was the star of the show...Cool Whip Frosting. It was very easy to locate, since it shares its home with traditional Cool Whip frozen topping. They even had special signs in the freezer section introducing this frosting. Cool Whip Frosting comes in 3 mouthwatering flavors: Vanilla, Chocolate, and Cream Cheese. Since we're making a Coconut Cake, we chose the Cream Cheese variety.
Next we had to grab all of the other ingredients for our cake. We stopped in the baking aisle for some sweetened condensed milk. As usual, we chose the Great Value brand. Their products are always high quality and help us save a lot of money!
We also grabbed some boxed cake mix. Yep! This cake is deceptively simple since the recipe calls for cake mix! Since my son's school is actively seeking Box Tops for Education, we grabbed some Betty Crocker Super Moist White Cake Mix. We knew we'd get a yummy cake, and we could help my son's school earn cash for much needed supplies. It's a win-win situation, if you ask me!
Next we went on a bit of a wild goose-chase. We had to find Cream of Coconut! We searched high and low, and finally found it in the wine and liquor aisle. We'd spent about 20 minutes searching, so this was almost like finding the Holy Grail. Then we felt a little bit silly because we should have looked in this section to begin with. After all, what's a Pina Colada without Cream of Coconut?!
Once we had all of our ingredients and the rest of our groceries, we were eager to get home and let the baking begin! You can check out the rest of my shopping experience HERE. I noticed some great deals while browsing Walmart!
I decided to help out by getting all of the ingredients ready for my guys while they studied the recipe. Baking is a science, and there's very little room for error. Measurements and technique generally need to be precise if you want good results. So while they finalized their "game plan", I got everything ready for them on the sidelines.
Once they were comfortable with the recipe's instructions, they got right to work.
My husband helped Kyle toast the coconut in the oven. This was a little tricky, since coconut tends to burn very quickly. We put it into a cake pan and popped it into a 350 degree oven. Kyle checked it every minute or so, stirring it around to make sure it browned evenly.
He did a great job, and our coconut ended up absolutely perfect with a golden brown color to it. Yum! It was all I could do to keep from eating it right out of the bowl. I resisted, though! This coconut had bigger and better plans!
After the coconut was toasted, the guys mixed up the cake batter and mixed some of this gorgeous coconut into it. Of course we reserved some for the top and sides of the cake. Then they poured the batter into 2 round cake pans. We baked them for about 30 minutes.
Now here's where the magic happens....While the cakes were baking, my husband mixed up a delightful concoction of Cream of Coconut and Sweetened Condensed Milk. We then poked holes in the cakes with the handle of a mixing spoon, spacing them about an inch or so apart. This mixture is then poured over the cakes while they're still hot. This makes the cake flavorful and ridiculously moist.
After the cakes cooled completely, it was time to assemble and ice the cake. My husband carefully removed the cakes from the round cake pans and then added a layer of Cream Cheese Cool Whip Frosting on one layer. Then he placed the other half on top.
Now our cake was a blank canvas, ready for icing and adorning with more of that delicious coconut and some slivered almonds. (You can use pecans, too. I just happen to have a thing for almonds!)
The whole time my husband iced our cake, he couldn't stop commenting on how easy the Cool Whip Frosting was to work with. It wasn't gooey or thick like traditional frosting. In fact, it is light, airy, and spreads like silk! This is probably the most user-friendly frosting any of us had ever encountered. I stole a spoonful when no one was looking, since I just had to taste it. Oh. My. Goodness. It was amazing! Light, creamy, and full of flavor. I'd honestly be happy to eat this right out of the tub. Again, I resisted.
I was pretty impressed by my husband's agility with a spatula. He got the frosting on very smoothly! I was expecting lots of lumps and craters, or even worse, crumbling cake. In just a few minutes, our cake was totally frosted and ready to top with our nuts and coconut.
Kyle, my 12 year old, strategically placed some slivered almonds on the top of the cake. He paid close attention to detail and spaced them out pretty evenly. I was one proud Mama watching my guys decorate our cake!
Next my boys got a little out of hand....It was time to add the toasted coconut. It all started out well. My husband had a delicate touch as he sprinkled the coconut on top of the cake. Then we came to the sides. I watched with concern as my men literally threw coconut at the sides of the cake. One would throw while the other rotated the plate. It definitely worked, but made a bit of a mess!
No worries, though. My husband is a pretty resourceful guy. He told me he would clean up the resulting mess. I was a little skeptical, since I wasn't sure how he'd clean up the plate while leaving the cake intact.
Imagine my horror when he came into the kitchen with our vacuum cleaner! Yes...I said vacuum. My husband vacuumed the cake while I sat in shocked silence and watched. I was ready for huge chunks of cake to disappear into our $3,000 vacuum. Surprisingly, they didn't. Dan was very careful to only suck the excess coconut from the edges of the plate. Our cake was unharmed. Phew! Talk about relief!
While some of my boys' methods were questionable, I was pretty delighted with the finished results. Our cake looked wonderful! Especially considering I had no part of its creation. My guys did a sensational job, and I was so very proud of them! They even added a ring of slivered almonds around the base of the cake for added visual appeal.
There was only one thing left to do: Try the cake! We each had a small slice, and I have to admit, it was the best coconut cake I have ever tasted. The cake itself was incredibly moist and was delicately flavored with coconut. The flavors were spot on and were not at all overpowering. The best part, though, had to be the frosting! It was absolutely decadent and smooth, and didn't add that heaviness that occurs with a lot of frostings. The Cool Whip Frosting was the perfect way to complement our amazingly delicious cake.
Want the recipe? I'm always happy to share! The thing I love most is that this cake is surprisingly easy to make and is pretty much fool-proof!
-1 (18 1/4 ounce) box cake mix. White or Yellow can be used.
-1 1/4 cups water
-1/3 cup butter, softened (Margarine can be substituted. We prefer the real thing, though!)
-1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
-1 (8 ounce) can cream of coconut (if not on the shelf look in the liquor section)
-1 cup coconut, for toasting
-1/2 cup coconut
-1/2 cup slivered almonds or chopped pecans
-1 container Cream Cheese Cool Whip Frosting, thawed (Or more!)
-Preheat oven to 350.
-While oven is preheating put 1 cup coconut in a pie pan and carefully toast in the oven, stirring occasionally.
(It will burn quickly so watch it carefully.).
-Mix cake mix, eggs, butter and water on medium speed for 2 minutes until mixed well.
-Stir in 1/2 cup toasted coconut.
-Pour into 2 greased round cake pans.
-Bake about 30 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
-Mix condensed milk with cream of coconut.
-Remove cakes from oven and poke holes all over cake with the handle of a wooden spoon about 1 inch apart.
-Pour milk/cream of coconut evenly over hot cakes.
-Remove cake from pans.
-Spread a thin layer of Cool Whip Frosting onto one layer of cake.
-Top with other half.
-Frost with Cool Whip Frosting.
-Sprinkle with remaining toasted coconut, coconut and pecans.
Want more ideas?
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I'm Brandy, a happily married, proud Mom of 3 amazing kids. If you're interested in building a working relationship, please feel free to e-mail me at: NewlyCrunchyMamaOf3@gmail.com
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