This year, Thanksgiving happened to fall on Delaney's mom's birthday. Jeanne has been here helping us with things for the new house for the past month, and we couldn't be more grateful. Jeanne is a designer and contractor on Maui where she renovates condos and homes. So, she has been helping us with our new house. She has great ideas and has already reinvented our front stoop for us - thanks to her, it is going to look beautiful.
So, of course I had to make her a birthday cake! I was asking her about what flavors she would like in a cake when she remembered to tell me that she brought me a lilikoi puree from Maui! I know she also loves almond, so I proposed an Almond Lilikoi Cake.
If you're unfamiliar with lilikoi, this fruit is also known as passion fruit, they are the same thing. Lilikoi is the Hawaiian name for passion fruit, so that's what we call it in my house. This fruit is usually only found in tropical areas, Hawaii being one of them. When Delaney and I were back visiting, I tasted a fresh off the vine lilikoi and there is nothing like it! It's a very seedy fruit with a sweet and tart flavor. The puree that Jeanne brought me is bright in yellow color just like the inside of the fruit and it colored this cake naturally! The puree was really tart, which made it the perfect addition to flavor the buttercream as it actually made this cake not too sweet at all.
We are in the middle of a huge snow storm right now. So, I found it ironic that I was making a Hawaiian inspired cake this week! Find the recipe below for my Almond Lilikoi Cake.
Almond Lilikoi Cake
Makes 3 layer 6-inch cake
3 large organic egg whites
1 stick (113 grams) organic salted butter, softened
170 grams (3/4 cup) organic cane sugar
2 teaspoons organic almond extract (like Fontier Co-Op)
170 grams (1 cup plus 3 tablespoons) all natural cake flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4 cup organic heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup organic milk
28 grams (1/4 cup) organic sliced almonds with their skins
15 grams (1/4 cup) organic unsweetened wide flake coconut
454 grams (3 cups plus 3 tablespoons) organic powdered sugar, sifted
2 sticks (226 grams) organic salted butter, softened
2 tablespoons lilikoi puree
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line three 6-inch cake pans with parchment paper.
To make the batter: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk egg whites on low and as they thicken, gradually increase speed to high and whisk until stiff peaks form. Remove from mixer and transfer to separate mixing bowl and set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (you can use the same bowl, no need to wash), add the butter, cane sugar, and almond extract. Mix on low until combined and there are no chunks of butter.
In a separate bowl, add the cake flour, baking powder, and sea salt and whisk together. Add the cream, milk and flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix on low until combined. Remove the bowl from the sand mixer and fold in the egg whites with a spatula. Continue to fold until you have a smooth cake batter.
Measure out the batter evenly into each pan, about 215 grams each. Spread evenly, and bake for 20 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Allow cake to cool completely before starting the frosting.
To make the topping: Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread out the almonds and coconut evenly. Bake for 2 to 3 minutes, or until golden brown and toasted. Remove from oven, set aside.
To make the frosting: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the powdered sugar, butter, and lilikoi puree. Mix starting on low until combined, then gradually increase the speed to high and mix for 1 minute or until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
To assemble: On a cake stand or cake spinner, place the first layer of cake. Place a generous amount of frosting on top and spread evenly, top with the second cake layer and repeat this process. Crumb coat the cake. Frost the cake smooth and add the topping around the sides.
Put the remaining frosting in a piping bag fitted with decorating tip #864 and pipe dollops around the top of the cake.
Store in a cake dome for up to 3 days.
Gluten Free – Replace the cake flour with 170 grams (1 cup plus 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon) organic gluten free flour blend.
High Altitude – Bake the cake at 350°F for 17 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Bake the topping as noted.