Recipe: The best cake ever

TheBigForestMakeCake1Sometime you really don’t want a grown-up cake, all subtle flavours and frosted in essence of possums-breath …. and kid’s cakes are great fun but taste a bit bland for adults. But this cake, dear reader, has it all – bright pink icing (camp 1950’s meets 8 year old girls Barbie party – check), raspberry jam filling (hit of sweet but not sickly, oooh its my favourite jam Mum – check), loaf shape (easy to slice, easy to make – check).

With a birthday in TheBigForest this week Benjamin our Maker in Chief made this spectacular cake just right for…..everyone! Yah!

Coconut and Raspberry Loaf Cake

Makes: 6 generous slices with a huge amount of calories and 10 rather thin ones

Takes: 25 minutes to make and about an hour to bake


150g unsalted butter

150g gold caster sugar

1 tsp good quality vanilla extract or the seeds of one vanilla pod

3 free-range eggs

250g self-raising flour

100g desiccated coconut

4tbsp semi-skimmed milk

6 tbsp raspberry jam – we used Bonne Maman because we are terribly sophisticated

For icing/frosting:

160g icing sugar

4tsp raspberry jam

4tsp hot water

For the topping:

2tbsp desiccated coconut


1 Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C/160 degrees C for fan ovens/Gas mark 4. Grease a 900g loaf tin or line with non-stick paper. Beat the butter, sugar, vanilla together until fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time with a little of the flour.

2 Fold in the coconut, remaining flour and milk. Spoon in ¾ of the cake mix into the tin and top with the jam. Spoon the rest of the cake mix on top.

3 Bake for 35 mins, cover and return to the oven for another 20-25 mins until cooked and just golden.

4 Take out of the tin and leave to cool on a wire rack. Mix together the icing ingredients, drizzle the icing over the cake and sprinkle the coconut on top (but not when it’s sitting on the wire rack as the icing dribbles down the side of the cake).



This recipe originally (surprisingly) came from one of those free magazines you pick up in the supermarket – co-op in this case, however Benjamin has mucked around with the quantities to make it work even better.

This cake is unbelievably amazing with a good Cornish (full fat) ice cream as a pudding

For those of you who love the gossip aspect of Life in TheBigForest those five candles have no significance at all – I’m not five, fifty or five hundred – although sometime I feel five hundred after a day in the garden but that, dear reader, is another story

I usually convert recipes in to imperial for our large American readership (I’m not sure that came out the right way) but I’m pressed for time and might make an error – it definitely says 6 cups of desiccated coconut here in the recipe – see what I mean. Best not to go there.

Right, make this cake and be over the moon!

About TheBigForest

TheBigForest. A silly artist maker creating in felt and paper construction. Like us on Facebook: TheBigForest. Find us at Twitter : twitter/TheBigForestuk


  1. LOL, well that was the most fun, probably because ‘you are terribly sophisticated’ tehe ! I’m certain any large American will enjoy it immensely…..what a riot! Belated Birthday Wishes.

  2. Cris

    Love that expression „essence of possum´s breath“, that really somehow must have slipped my attention when reading through the recipe…I feel very well „infotained“ in this British/English blog-land, I must say;-) haberdashery, essence of possum´s breath – and yesterday I learned what a mugshot I is (this by a very talented Canadian collage artist who used vintage photos of criminals) ;-))).

    • Ah yes – mug being a historic word for a face – you can weave the expression ‘he has an ugly mug’ in to conversation. As for my slightly surreal turn of phrase that is not repeatable. “Would you like the full English?” “No just a cup of tea and the essence of possum’s breath for me, thank you”. Should silence any British cafe you visit! I have a post written specially for you on vocabulary Cris, its coming soon.

      • ;-D oh really, a vocab post coming up fo me ?? THAT would be SO cool! Oh, but you are not serious about that *pouts* … that is another thing I enjoy – detecting the British sarcasm and irony 😉 ….but seriously, I´d LOVE a “British vocab special” one day if the occasion arises. Actually, there for sure is (in theory) enough material for a whole series when one considers the diff. regional / local oddities in language within the country ;-o

  3. lundygirl

    I must be sophisticated – I use Bonne Maman jam too!

  4. ann perrin


  5. Ok, substituted polenta for coconut, and then discovered we were out of jam, so substituted Amareno cherries, that prompted almond essence. So your coconut raspberry recipe has morphed a bit. Smells good though.

  6. I had a hard time getting past the essence of possum’s breath . . . but I’m glad I did!

  7. Dear Michael, I wish you a VERY happy (belated) birthday! It sure sounds and looks like you enjoyed it 😉

  8. Looks yum! I know it’s breakfast time and therefore cake would be “adult inappropriate,” but now I want it 🙂 Happy belated birthday 😀

  9. This sounds fantastic, just working out what to substitute for the coconut. My family doesn’t like coconut, funny lot!

    • Lots of people don’t and I was actually going to suggest a substitute but couldn’t. Nuts won’t do it, it needs to be something with a bit of depth to offset the raspberry. I wonder if anyone else has a brilliant idea?

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