Sunday, December 3, 2017

Samoa Bundt Cake

There are just some girl scout cookie flavors that are such favorites that they have crossed the cookie boundary into everything from mixed drinks to ice cream. The most common replicated flavor has been from the Samoa cookie. We just can't seem to get enough of that crunchy cookie base that is laden with caramelized coconut and chocolate made famous by the Girl Scouts.

In this post, the flavor of the Samoa cookie can be found in a delicious Bundt cake. The cake has the tender crumb you know to be a great quality of the traditional Bundt. Each piece has a tasty blend of brown sugar and coconut flavor in the base with a caramelized coconut topping. The flavor is good enough to stand on its own. However, I could not resist to add some ganache drizzle to a slice.

While the cake was pretty tasty, there was a problem issue. The recipe calls for a blend of coconut/brown sugar and butter to be pressed into the bottom of the Bundt pan. I used a black bundt pan. After baking, quite a bit of the coconut stuck to the pan and the cake was difficult to release. The original recipe was posted noting that the pan used was a new, cast aluminum non-stick Bundt pan. Baking with this particular equipment turned out to be crucial to insure that the cake releases with a thick and toasty layer of coconut on top.

I would not make this recipe again without the specific type of cake pan as noted in the recipe. Cooking the coconut mixture in a saucepan until it caramelizes is another option. Then the cake batter can be split and the coconut mixture put in between the two cake layers. The coconut would bake with the mixture as a tunnel in the cake instead of on the surface. Another idea is to eliminate the recipe for the coconut topping and use another Bundt recipe that includes a coconut filling.

The recipe is listed below as I originally baked, adapted from the author. I have included the ganache topping recipe as well. Even though you may not have a non-stick cast aluminum pan, the website link below does have numerous Bundt cake recipes that can accommodate different types of Bundt pans.

Samoa Bundt Cake
adapted from Food Lust People Love 

1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup melted butter
2 cups sweetened coconut

6 eggs, room temperature
1 cup canned unsweetened coconut milk
1 cup or 2 sticks of butter, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp coconut extract
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
2 tsp baking powder
2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt

Ingredients/Chocolate Glaze
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 oz chopped dark chocolate
pinch of salt

Start by melting a few tablespoons of butter. Brush the interior of a 12 cup Bundt pan (specific type of pan as noted above) with the melted butter and dust with flour. Tap out excess flour and make sure all areas are completely covered. Then place pan in refrigerator. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

For the cake, place the butter and both types of sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on medium high for about 5 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl in intervals. The mixture should be very light and fluffy after this process. Set aside bowl.

In another bowl, sift together the salt, baking powder and flour.

Add one egg to the butter/sugar mixture and beat for about 30 seconds and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Repeat this process, adding one egg at a time, until all 6 eggs are incorporated into the batter. Using a separate bowl, pour in the coconut milk and stir in both extracts. Pour the coconut mixture into the butter/sugar mixture and beat until thoroughly blended. Lastly, using a wooden spoon, fold in the sifted ingredients.

Fill the cake pan with the batter and place in oven and bake for about 60-70 minutes or until tester comes out clean. Place cake pan on a rack to cool for about 20 minutes and then invert onto rack and let cool completely before covering with ganache.

To make ganache, place chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Then fill a saucepan with the heavy cream and place over medium high heat. Let the cream heat up just to the point of simmering and remove from heat. Stir in vanilla extract and salt. Pour mixture over the chopped chocolate and let sit, undisturbed for 2 minutes. Whisk until smooth and then pour over cake evenly, covering the top and letting drip down the sides. Once the ganache is set, the cake is ready to serve.
 Tips and Notes:
1. The ganache is optional, but remember that dark chocolate is a strong component and may overpower the flavor of the cake. You can put it on the side when serving so your guests can choose how much or how little they want.

2. Again, the success of the coconut topping requires the specific pan. The top surface of the cake will have a crispy chewy layer when baked, resulting in a mix of caramel and toasted coconut.

3. You are welcome to bake this in a 10 cup bundt pan. The pan is to be filled 3/4 full, so there may be batter left over. Also, baking time may need to be adjusted.

3. The cake lasts for about 3 days when stored in an air tight container.
                                    **LAST YEAR: Peanut Butter Bundt Cake**