All this great weather is making me think it's finally here. Officially. I had originally planned some decadent chocolate-y coconut almond cupcakes (very similar to these) to make for Easter, but then the weather turned nice and I wanted something more fruity and spring-y.
So I made this cake, and it is just the essence of spring. In cake form. Also the bunny I frosted on top helps a little :)
The lemon cake is lemon-y. Emphasis on the lemon-y. And of course, adding blueberry only improved the cake, because lemon and blueberry is a perfect combination.
But the best bites are the ones with frosting (I mean, duh), because the coconut really pulls it all together and gives it that little sophisticated taste. It elevates it from just a simple lemon and blueberry cake into something more interesting. Lemon and blueberry has been done before. Lemon, blueberry, and coconut isn't common.
And you should definitely give it a try because the three flavors work together beautifully. Like a beautiful symphony of tastes that your tastebuds simply have to give a standing ovation to because it was so beautiful. (I'm taking Music Appreciation this semester, so music is on the brain.)
If there's one thing I've learned in the one and half years of doing this blog, it is that photographing layers cakes is hard. They are just so difficult to position and make look appealing and appetizing and aesthetically pleasing. They look great in real life, but in picture form I just cannot seem to get a good angle. These pictures I chose are the best. Trust me, there were some pretty bad pictures.
So you'll just have to trust me when I tell you how wonderful this cake was, even if the pictures don't do it justice.
Lemon Blueberry Coconut Cake
1 recipe lemon blueberry cake (recipe below)
1 recipe blueberry curd (recipe below)
1 recipe coconut cream cheese frosting (recipe below)
Place the first layer of cake down and pipe a line of coconut cream cheese frosting around the edges, then fill with blueberry curd. Feel free to use a lot, even half of it if you want.
Do the next layer the same, then cover the whole thing in frosting. Dye the frosting how you want, and maybe even do a bunny :) . Or just decorate with shredded coconut. To dye it, mix food coloring with 1 tablespoon of water and add in about 1 ½ cups of coconut.
Lemon Blueberry Layer Cake
Adapted From: Sally's Baking Addiction
1 cup (230g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1 and 1/4 cups (250g) granulated sugar
1/2 cup (100g) light brown sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
3 cups (375g) all-purpose flour, careful not to overmeasure
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (240ml) buttermilk (or milk and 1 tablespoon lemon juice)
zest + juice of 3 medium lemons or 2 large ones
1 and 1/2 cups blueberries, fresh (258g) or non-thawed frozen (275g)
1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
Preheat the oven to 350F. Spray three 9x2 inch cake pans with nonstick spray. Set aside.
Make the cake. Using a handheld or stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on high until creamy - about 1 minute. In a small bowl, add the sugars and lemon zest and rub with your fingers to release the flavor of the zest into the sugar. (Do this. It is important to do for maximum lemon-y goodness.) Add this to the butter and beat on medium-high speed until creamed, about 2-3 minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Add eggs and vanilla. Beat on medium speed until everything is combined, about 2 full minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Set aside.
In a large sized bowl, toss together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Beat on low speed for 5 seconds, then add the milk, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Remove from the mixer and stir lightly until everything is just combined. Toss the blueberries in 1 Tablespoon of flour and fold into the batter. Batter is extremely thick. Do not overmix at any point. Overmixing will lend a tough, dense textured crumb.
Spoon batter evenly into 3 prepared cake pans. Bake for about 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Mine took 21 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before frosting.
Assemble and frost. First, using a large serrated knife, trim the tops off the cake layers to create a flat surface. Place 1 layer on your cake stand. Evenly cover the top with cream cheese frosting. Top with 2nd layer, more frosting, then the third layer. Top with frosting and spread around the sides. The recipe doesn't make a ton of frosting, just enough for a light frost. Top with blueberries or lemon garnish if desired. Refrigerate for at least 45 minutes before cutting or else the cake may fall apart as you cut.
Make 1 day in advance if you'd like. Extras keep well in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
6 tablespoons lemon juice
1 cup blueberries
1 1/2 tablespoons water
½ cup sugar
1/3 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 eggs, lightly beaten
Place the juice, blueberries, water and sugar in a pot over low heat. Stir the berries constantly until the berries have softened and are releasing juices, about 10 minutes.
Strain the blueberries into a clean pot to remove the lemon zest and blueberry skins (I did not strain mine, but simply remove the lemon zest).
Add in the butter and stir until all the butter has melted. Stir in the eggs gradually. Cook the blueberry mixture over low heat, stirring constantly until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, which will take about 10 to 15 minutes.
Transfer the curd into a clean container, let cool completely, cover and refrigerate overnight to let it set
Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
½ cup butter, softened
3 ½ cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 teaspoons coconut extract
Combine cream cheese and butter in mixing bowl at low speed for about 30 seconds.
Add powdered sugar, mixing in a little at a time, until it is all incorporated
Add more sugar, as necessary to reach desirably consistency
Add coconut extract, increase mixer speed to medium and beat until frosting is fluffy, about 1 minute more