Coconut Layer Cake



  1. Heat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Grease the bottom and sides of two 9-inch round cake pans; cover the bottom with a circle of wax or parchment paper, grease the paper, and sift flour over the pans.
  3. Shake to distribute the flour evenly, turn the pans upside down, and tap over the sink to remove the excess flour.
  4. Cream the 1 1/4 sticks butter until smooth, then gradually add the sugar.
  5. Beat until light and fluffy, 3 or 4 minutes.
  6. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then the vanilla.
  7. Combine the flour, baking powder, 1/2 cup of the coconut, and the salt; add to the egg mixture by hand, at a time, alternating with the milk.
  8. Stir after each addition until smooth.
  9. Pour the batter into the pans and smooth out the tops.
  10. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cakes comes out clean.
  11. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 5 minutes, then invert the pans and slide the cakes onto a rack to finish cooling.
  12. Fill, stack, and frost the layers directly on a large plate: Figure one-third of the icing and 1/2 cup coconut for the middle, one-third of the icing for the top, and one-third of the icing for the sides.
  13. Press the remaining coconut into the icing all over the cake.
  14. Serve or store at room temperature, covered.