Let's just be honest for a minute. This should really be called Lemon-Coconut Cake, because that is what it is--a sweet, moist delicious spring-like cake overflowing with the flavors of coconut and lemon. YUM! The only thing remotely bread-like about it is the fact that it's baked in a bread loaf pan. Whew! Now that we've gotten that little detail out of the way, we can go back to pretending that this is a bread and suitable for breakfast consumption. One thing that's easy to be honest about is the taste--this lemon-coconut quick "bread" is absolutely delicious and perfect for celebrating the brighter warmer days to come!!
If you've been following the blog for any length of time, you will know that I have a weakness for lemon desserts. You will also know that I'll pretty much pop anything with coconut into my mouth as well, so when I found an easy-to-make quick bread that combines both, needless to say, I was overjoyed!!
This bread is so luscious and tender and the glaze makes the top irresistibly crunchy, perfectly balancing out the tartness of the citrus. It's great for breakfast and divine with an afternoon cup of tea. If you know someone who's a lemon/coconut lover, make this asap and watch the dreamy look as they take that first bite (it's ok to stand in front of the mirror if that happens to be you!!).
Makes 12 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes; Bake Time: 50 minutes, plus time for cake to cool and then glaze to set.
For the glaze
- 2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
- 2 tablespoons evaporated milk (plus more as needed)
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon unsalted butter, melted and cooled
For the cake
- 2 1/2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup shredded, sweetened coconut
- 3/4 cup evaporated milk
- Finely grated zest 1 lemon
- 1/2 cup lemon juice (from 4-5 large lemons)
- 2 large eggs, room temperature, lightly beaten
- 1/4 cup buttermilk, room temp
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Spray a 9x5x3-inch loaf pan with nonstick spray and set aside.
2. To make the glaze: Place the confectioners' sugar in a medium-size bowl. Stir in the milk, lemon juice and butter until mixture is smooth. Add more milk by the spoonful to come up with a pourable syrupy glaze. Set aside.
3. To make the cake: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Then use a spoon to stir in the sugar and coconut. Set aside.
4. In a separate large bowl, whisk the milk, lemon juice, zest, eggs, buttermilk and vanilla together well. Slowly pour the mixture into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Pour in the butter and stir until the batter is smooth. Pour into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
5. Bake for 50 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let the cake sit in the pan on the rack for 10 minutes. Then invert onto the rack and invert again so that the cake can finish cooling right side up. When cake is cool, place a pan underneath the rack to catch the drips and drizzle the glaze all over the top, letting it run down the sides. Transfer the cake to a platter, slice and serve.
6. Cake keeps well wrapped at room temperature for 3-4 days.
Note: Recipe adapted from Sweet Mornings by Patty Pinner.