It's always a joy to visit Linda and Chiara and I decided that something special was needed when they invited me, along with some other friends, to celebrate Carnevale on Saturday morning. I made my mother's coconut cake, which, for the occasion, became "Carnival Cake" - well, sort of. Here it is just out of the tin:
And here, with the help of some orange icing sugar, it became a carnival mask cake. This might have worked better if I'd cut the template just a little smaller but I didn't have time. Anyway, you get the idea?
I am going to give you the recipe in good old ounces, as my mum gave it to me:
My mum's coconut cake
7 oz self-raising flour or, in Italy, farina per torte plus an envelope of vanilla-flavoured lievito
4 oz sugar
4 oz butter, softened and cubed
3 oz dessicated coconut
6 oz mixed red and green glacé cherries, washed and halved
Line the base of a 2lb loaf tin with baking paper and butter the sides. Then just whizz everything, including the cherries, in a food processor until you have a "cake" consistency - you know, the mixture should just drop off the spoon when you shake it. [My mum used to beat it by hand but would have loved the innovation.] Spoon it all into the tin and bake for one hour at 150 C. It is ready when a skewer plunged into the top comes out clean. Coll on a wire rack. When you slice the cake, the finely chopped cherries will give the slices a satisfactory pink colour.
Enjoy and don't stop the carnival!