Coconut Cake with Lime Curd Filling
- 2 1⁄2 cups cake flour
- 2 1⁄4 tsp. baking powder
- 3⁄4 tsp. salt
- 1 1/3 cups milk
- 2 1⁄4 tsp. vanilla extract
- 12 Tbs. (1 1⁄2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 1 1⁄2 cups sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 jar (11.5 oz.) lime curd
- 1 batch Seven-Minute Coconut Frosting (see
related recipe at right)
- 1 1⁄2 cups sweetened shredded coconut
Position a rack in the lower third of an oven and preheat to 350°F. Lightly butter the bottoms and sides of two 9-by-2-inch round cake pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper. Lightly butter the paper and dust the pans and paper with flour; tap out excess flour.
Over a sheet of waxed paper, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
In a small bowl, stir together the milk and vanilla; set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy and smooth, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the sugar and continue beating until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the milk mixture and beginning and ending with the flour. Beat each addition just until incorporated, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
Spoon the batter into the prepared pans, spreading it evenly. Bake until the cakes begin to pull away from the sides of the pans and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Transfer the pans to a wire rack and let the cakes cool in the pans for 15 minutes. Turn the cakes out onto the rack, remove the parchment and let cool completely. Using a serrated knife, level the top of each cake by slicing off any "domed" part. Cut each cake in half horizontally to create 4 equal layers.
To assemble, place 1 cake layer, cut side up, on a plate. Spread half of the lime curd over the surface. Top with another cake layer, cut side up, and spread with a generous 1 cup of the frosting. Top with a third cake layer, cut side up, and spread the remaining lime curd over the surface. Top with the remaining cake layer, cut side up. Spread the remaining frosting over the top and sides of the cake. Using your fingers, press the coconut onto the top and sides. Refrigerate the cake for 30 minutes before serving to set the frosting.