Today’s energy was devoted to baking a cake for my special boy’s first birthday tomorrow. (He’s my special boy because I attended at his birth.)  His mom will bake a traditional cake but I made a gluten-free one for those of us who don’t eat gluten.  Mostly that would be Miranda.  Here’s an interesting recipe from that worked quite well, with my variations in parenthesis.  I used a mocha glaze for frosting.


For coconut layer cake

* 1 3/4 cup almond flour (not almond meal)
* 2 tablespoons coconut flour (I used three heaping tablespoons)
* 10 large eggs, at room temperature, separated
* 1 tablespoon coconut or golden rum (I used vanilla extract)
* 2 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted
* 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar (I used a heaping 1/4 tsp and added a tsp of baking powder)
* 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt


Preheat oven to 350F. Line bottoms of cake pans with parchment paper.

In large bowl, whisk together almond and coconut flours.

In bowl of electric mixer fitted with whisk attachment, beat egg yolks at high speed until pale yellow and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce speed to moderately low and beat in rum and all but 1 tablespoon confectioner’s sugar. Scrape down bowl, then increase speed to high and beat until pale and thick, about 1 minute. Reduce speed to low and gradually add almond and coconut flour mixture, scraping down bowl and folding in last of flour by hand. Set aside.

In clean dry bowl of electric mixer fitted with whisk attachment, beat egg whites on moderate speed until very foamy, about 1 minute. Beat in cream of tartar, salt, and remaining 1 tablespoon confectioner’s sugar. Increase speed to moderately high and beat until whites hold stiff peaks, about 2 minutes. (My peaks didn’t stiffen but cake came out fine.) Fold 1 cup beaten egg whites into yolk mixture to lighten, then gently fold in remaining whites. Divide batter between pans, smoothing tops, and bake until layers are golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Invert pans onto wire racks and cool completely, at least 1 hour. Run knife around cake layers to loosen, invert onto rack, and peel off the parchment.

This made two 9-inch layers.

Chef’s notes: To keep the plate clean while frosting the cake, tuck 4 (3-inch-wide) strips of parchment paper under the edge of the cake. Pull the parchment off just before serving.