This delightful recipe comes from Melissa at Melissa’s Southern Style Kitchen. I went searching for it after I had a request to make something that involved coconut and pineapple. Cookies are typically the first thing that come to mind for me, but I wasn’t sure how to handle both of those flavors in a cookie so I decided to branch out and try a loaf recipe instead. Melissa’s recipe looked great and the idea of a light and sweet bread definitely appealed so I gave it a try and am very glad I did!
The resulting cake was well-received! I unfortunately didn’t have any of the macadamia nuts on hand that Melissa has in her recipe so they got left out of this particular cake. I’ve noted them below as an optional ingredient because I found this cake to be very soft and moist and thought that the crunchy macadamias would upset that texture. I’m also calling this a cake just because of how moist and sweet it is; it’s a cake that doesn’t need icing!
Yield: One 9×5″ or 8×4″ cake
Preparation Time: 20-30 minutes
- 1 cup shredded coconut, toasted
- 1/2 cup chopped macadamia nuts, roughly chopped (optional)
- 20 oz canned crushed pineapple, drained (~12oz/340g)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (250g)
- 1 cup white sugar (200g)
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup butter, melted
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup plain Greek yogurt (~250g)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup shredded coconut (for topping)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease a 9×5 or 8×4 loaf pan.
- Toast 1 cup of coconut and macadamias for 7-8 minutes.
- Drain the pineapple, squeezing out as much liquid as possible.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
- Whisk together the melted butter, eggs, yogurt, and vanilla until well-combined.
- Add the wet ingredients into the dry and gently stir until just-combined.
- Fold in the toasted coconut, macadamias, and pineapple.
- Pour the batter into the pan and spread out evenly.
- Top with the remaining 1/2 cup of coconut (no need to toast it first, it’s about to get thoroughly toasted!).
- Bake for 40 minutes.
- Cover with aluminum foil to protect the top and bake for another 10-20 minutes. The classic toothpick test should come out clean when it’s done.
- Cool in the loaf pan for at least 60 minutes then remove from the pan and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Either a 9×5 or an 8×4 loaf pan will work for this recipe but with the latter you’ll probably need to bake for a little longer to compensate for the taller loaf.
- It’s very important to leave the cake in the pan after pulling it out of the oven; the center is still cooking and will continue to do so for a while. Be sure to give it an hour before separating the cake from the pan otherwise you’ll have a mushy and unpleasant center.
- Either sweetened or unsweetened shredded coconut will work fine in this recipe. Melissa called for sweetened and I only had unsweetened on hand, but the final result was plenty sweet enough for me!
Start by toasting some coconut…
When crushing the pineapple I found that my 20oz can reduced to approximately 12oz once I’d strained it as best I could. If you can’t find an exactly 20oz can, just try and strain as much liquid out of whatever sized cans you can get your hands on until you have about 12oz and you should be fine.
Now whisk together the dry ingredients, including the sugar. The color might look slightly off but that’s because I’m using unbleached flour. That has the advantage of letting you see a visible change in color and a cue for when you’ve thoroughly whisked everything together.
A mechanical whisk makes the next part a little easier to ensure you’ve got a smooth and consisted blend of the butter, eggs, yogurt, and vanilla.
Now you can pour the wet ingredients into the dry mix and fold it all together. Continue to gently stir until there are no more traces of the flour mixture.
Throw in the toasted coconut, pineapple, and if you’re using them, macadamias!
Now you can pour the batter into the pan and spread over top the remaining 1/2 cup of coconut. You’ll notice here that mine’s already been toasted, because unlike in Melissa’s recipe I toasted all 1 1/2 cups at first, but I don’t recommend doing that because the resulting topping came out a little over-toasted. On the plus side, the topping didn’t burn, so it’s not a huge problem if you make the same mistake I did.
After about an hour in the oven we have cake but we can’t eat it yet!
After another hour spent in the pan we have cake that we can eat!