Gluten Free Lemon Coconut Layer Cake

Recipe contribution by Melanie Persson, MasterChef Contestant 2022

Lemon Coconut Layer Cake Recipe

The Well and Good Lemon Coconut Cake is a yummy gluten free lemon cake with sweet goji berry icing. It’s the perfect building block for creating a decadent layer cake combined with lemon curd, buttercream, and a lemon simple syrup.

Find out how it’s done by following the simple instructions below courtesy of @theveryhungrycoeliac. It’s the ultimate “pimp my cake” recipe for anyone wanting to take a packet mix to the next level.

Recipe serves: 6-8

Ingredients

Lemon curd

  • 6 egg yolks
  • 230g sugar
  • 2 Tbs lemon zest
  • 125ml lemon juice
  • 130g butter
  • 20g corn flour
  • Generous pinch of salt

Swiss Meringue Buttercream

  • 3 egg whites (~120g)
  • 120g caster sugar
  • 1/8 tsp cream of tartar
  • 220g butter, cubed and at room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 Goji Berry Icing Mix from the Lemon Coconut Cake Packet

Lemon Simple Syrup

  • 50ml water
  • 50ml lemon juice
  • 40g caster sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste or extract
  • Small pinch of salt

Method

1. Preheat your oven to 180C (160 fan-forced). Grease and line two 5-inch cake tins or one 8-inch cake tin.
2. Make the lemon and coconut cake according to packet instructions. Pour batter into prepared cake tin(s) and bake until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cakes comes out clean (about 30-35 minutes for the smaller cakes, or 40-45 minutes for the larger cake).
3. While the cakes are baking, make your lemon curd.
4. Whisk egg yolks, sugar, corn flour, lemon zest and lemon juice in a large heatproof bowl over a baine marie/double-boiler. Heat gently, whisking constantly until thickened. Add the butter, one cube at a time until the curd is thick and glossy. Season with a pinch of salt.
5. Pour the lemon curd into a clean bowl and cover with plastic wrap so that the plastic sits directly on the curd. This prevents a skin from forming. Refrigerate until cool.
6. While the cake and the curd are cooling, make the Swiss meringue buttercream. Whisk the egg whites, sugar and cream of tartar in the bowl of a stand mixer over a baine-marie/double boiler until the sugar granules have dissolved and the mixture is very warm to the touch (about 62C if you have a thermometer).
7. Transfer the bowl to the stand mixer and whisk on low to medium speed for 3 minutes before increasing the speed to medium to high.
8. Whisk until stiff peaks form, then start gradually adding the butter, whisking constantly on medium to high speed. As you add the butter, the mixture will look like it is sinking and splitting. Just keep whisking.
9. As you add the last of the butter, the mixture should be coming together and might look quite yellow because of the butter. Continue mixing on high speed for 5-6 minutes until the mixture is pale, light and glossy.
10. Switch the whisk to a paddle attachment on your stand mixer, add the vanilla bean paste and salt, then beat for a further 3-4 minutes. Colour the buttercream with food colouring if you wish, then set aside until ready to use.
11. When the cake(s) have cooled completely, slice them horizontally to create four layers in total, trimming off the tops if they have domed significantly.
12. Make the lemon simple syrup by combining the ingredients for the syrup in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir until the sugar has dissolved.
13. Brush the lemon simple syrup over the freshly-cut cake layers.
14. To assemble the Lemon and Coconut layer cake, start by placing one layer of the cake on a cake board or plate, flattest-side down. You can secure the layer in place with a little buttercream on the underside.
15. Place a generous dollop of buttercream onto the layer and smooth it out with a spatula. Create a well in the centre of the buttercream topping, ensuring that there is at least an inch of solid buttercream around the edges.
16. Fill the well with a layer of lemon curd and place another cake layer on top.
17. Repeat this process twice more, and then place the final layer of cake on the very top.
18. Place another generous dollop of buttercream on the top of the cake and smooth it all around the top and the sides of the cake. You can either do this twice, placing it in the fridge between layers to secure the “crumb coat”, making for a neater finish, or you can cover the entire cake with the rest of the buttercream in one go.
19. Decorate the cake how you like, using any leftover buttercream or lemon and coconut garnishes you like. Serve the cake at room temperature.

Melanie Persson

Melanie Persson

Masterchef Contestant

Melanie was diagnosed with Coeliac Disease in 2016 and has been cooking gluten free since then. She competed in MasterChef 2022, displaying her ability to take regular wheat-based recipes and make them suitable for those on a gluten free diet.

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