I made an Almond Joy layer cake for Easter dinner and it was a big hit. It really tasted like Almond Joy! I made mine in the shape of a lamb for the holiday using the Wilton lamb 3D cake pan. You can also use the traditional round cake pans for other times of the year as this is a great cake to make year round.
- 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 stick (4 oz.) unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
- 3 oz. semisweet mini chocolate chips or chopped semisweet chocolate (about 1/2 cup)
- 2 1/4 cups granulated sugar
- 4 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp. salt plus a big pinch
- 3 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 bag (14 oz.) sweetened shredded coconut (4 packed cups)
- 2 cups sliced almonds
- 3 cups heavy cream
- 1/3 cup confectioners’ sugar
- Preheat the oven to 325°. Butter two 8-inch-by-2-inch round cake pans. Line with parchment and butter the parchment.
- In a medium saucepan, bring 2/3 cup water to a boil. Whisk in the cocoa powder until smooth. Make sure you have the butter and chocolate ready to put in immediately. The cocoa powder will soak up all of the water right away and you don’t want it to burn. Whisk in the butter and chocolate over low heat until melted, about 2 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and whisk in 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, 2 tsp. vanilla and 1/2 tsp. salt. Whisk in 1 egg at a time, beating well after each addition.
- In a large bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and baking soda. Pour in the chocolate mixture until smooth. Stir in 1 packed cup coconut.
- Divide the batter between the pans and bake in the lower third of the oven for 35 minutes or until firm in the center. Let cool in the pans on racks for 10 minutes, then invert onto racks to cool completely. If you are baking in the Wilton lamb cake pan bake for 45 minutes.
- While the cake cools, spread the almonds on a rimmed baking sheet and toast for 10-12 minutes; let cool.
- In a saucepan, combine 3/4 cup cream, the remaining 1/4 cup granulated sugar and pinch salt and simmer, stirring, over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining 2 tsp. vanilla and 3 packed cups coconut. When cool, fold in 1 1/2 cups almonds.
- Split the cake layers to make 4 layers. Place 1 layer cut side up on a cake stand and spread with 1 cup of the coconut-almond mixture.
- Top with the second layer cut side down and spread with 1 cup more of the mixture. Repeat with the remaining 2 cake layers and filling, spreading the filling on the top.
- Cover the cake with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours to firm up.
- Whip the remaining 2 1/4 cups cream with the confectioners’ sugar until stiff. Spread over the cake. Sprinkle the top with the remaining almonds. If you are make the lamb cake, sprinkle with coconut instead of the almonds.
Recipe adpated from Rachel Ray magazine.