I am a sucker for romance and food, so when I read my first romance novel with a culinary theme I was hooked! I never knew it was a “thing”. There are so many wonderful culinary themed romance novels out there to be read and enjoyed.

My latest find is an adorable book called “The Coincidence of Coconut Cake”. It was written by Amy E. Reichert. I won’t give the plot away, but if you want a fun, light read with some food and romance all packed into one, this is the book for you.

What I love about these novels with a food theme is that very often the author provides a wonderful bonus after the book has been enjoyed. Sometimes recipes for the foods mentioned in the book are given at the end. I love this aspect of the food themed novel.

In “The Coincidence of Coconut Cake” the author provides a most delicious recipe for coconut cake at the end of her book. When I read through the recipe I immediately wanted to make it. We have coconut fanatics in my family, who shall remain nameless, so it was a MUST bake recipe for me!

I have made a lot of cakes in my day, but I must admit this coconut cake is SPECTACULAR!!! Even the picky fanatics were extremely pleased. What was unusual about this recipe was that it used a mixing method that I don’t see very often in cookbooks. It is known as the Two-Stage method. Most cakes use the Creaming method or the Blending method.

In the Two-Stage method, the dry ingredients like the flour, sugar and chemical leaveners are all mixed with the butter. Then the liquid ingredients are added in 2 stages. Hence, the name Two-Stage.

The coconut flavor really came out because of the addition of the trifecta: cream of coconut, coconut milk AND coconut extract in both the cake and the frosting. I sprinkled toasted coconut shavings in the middle of the cake on top of the first layer, and then all over the cake including the top and sides. This created a nice crunch in every bite.

Life is too short and crazy! My recommendation? First, go out and get this book.

Second, read this book. It really is sweet! And third, MAKE THIS YUMMY-LICIOUS CAKE! If you are crazy for coconut you will not be sorry.

Happy Baking!

Chef Gail