This cake is worth the wait

Plan ahead for 3-day coconut cake

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Sometimes dessert is just a quick, last-minute gesture: a bowl of vanilla ice cream with chocolate sauce on top, or slice-and-bake cookies served hot from the oven.

Other times, it’s a little more time-consuming. Way more time-consuming.

This cake falls in the latter category.

I actually started preparation for this delicious coconut cake on Friday afternoon, but it wasn’t until Monday afternoon that I got my first bite. Was it worth the wait? Yes. Definitely, yes.

Several weeks ago, my niece Lynette Lee mentioned on Facebook that her mother, Frances Wells Tomlinson, had taken a three-day coconut cake to her house.

I asked for the recipe.

Frances is a wonderful cook, so I knew the cake would be delicious. With Easter coming up, I thought my readers would enjoy a new recipe for coconut cake this season. (So would I.) Frances obliged and sent me her recipe.

The cake is very easy to make.

“The hardest part is waiting three days before eating it,” Frances said. I agree!

The cake preparation actually starts the day before you bake it. (So that really makes it a four-day coconut cake!)

The coconut icing is mixed and stored in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours. I didn’t realize this and had to delay my cake-baking for a day. But I wanted to do it right, so I mixed the icing Friday evening, after the coconut thawed, and waited until Saturday morning to make my layers.

The layers are made from a yellow cake mix in two round pans. Once they are cooked and cooled, cut the layers in half, making four layers.

Then all you do is cover each layer with icing as you build the cake. The frosting will drip down the sides. This is fine, this is good, do not fret. And do not attempt to frost the side of the cake.

Next, cover the cake and place it in the refrigerator for three days. Three days.

If your refrigerator is like my refrigerator, this is actually the most difficult task in making this cake. Impossible at my house. I bypassed cleaning out the fridge and took the cake to the refrigerator at work. (Yes, I put a note on the cake telling my co-workers not to eat it until I had photographed it; then I would share!)

My husband and I had a slice of coconut cake on Monday. Storing the cake for three days creates some kind of magic. The cake was very moist and delicious. And I enjoyed eating it cold.

This cake would be a perfect cake for your Easter dinner. You can make it in advance, put it in the fridge, and not worry about dessert until it’s time to put it on the table.

lisa@wilsontimes.com | 265-7810

3-Day Coconut Cake


16 ounces sour cream (2 cups)

2 cups granulated sugar

24 ounces frozen coconut (make sure to buy frozen coconut)


Duncan Hines moist yellow cake mix prepared for 2 round, 9-inch layers as directed on box

Mix icing ingredients and leave covered in refrigerator overnight or for 8 hours.

Make cake as directed on box for 2 9-inch layers.

When cake has cooled, split layers in half to make 4 round layers.

To build your cake, ice with the coconut between layers and on top. Do not ice the sides. Put equal amount of icing mixture on each layer.

Cover cake with a tight-fitting cake cover and refrigerate for 3 days.

Icing is slightly liquid and is absorbed by the cake, making it delicious.

Frances W. Tomlinson