Almond Joy® Layer Cake
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- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup Dutched cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 2 cups Imperial Sugar Extra Fine Granulated Sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons almond extract
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup water
- Coconut Filling
- 1 cup Imperial Sugar Extra Fine Granulated Sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- Pinch salt
- 3 1/2 cups shredded unsweetened coconut
- 1 cup heavy cream or 7/8 cup canned coconut milk
- Double recipe: Chocolate Ganache or Sauce
- 2/3 cup whole almonds
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds
- Preheat oven to 310°F.
- Butter and flour three 8-inch baking pans and set aside. (Fitting a round piece of parchment paper on bottom of baking pan is highly recommended for easy removal of cake.)
- Sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and sugar and set aside.
- In a bowl large enough to hold all ingredients whisk eggs and buttermilk until well combined. Add oil, vanilla, almond extract and salt and whisk smooth.
- Meanwhile heat water until hot.
- Add dry ingredients buttermilk-egg mixture and whisk smooth. Add hot water in 3 increments, while whisking the batter smooth in between additions.
- Divide batter evenly into the pans and place in oven, bake for 40-45 minutes until center of cake bounces back when lightly pressed with a finger or until an inserted toothpick comes clean.
- After 5 minutes turn upside down on parchment paper lined surface and allow to cool completely before filling or frosting, about 1 hour.
- Meanwhile prepare filling. Bring to boil sugar and water and remove from heat. Add coconut and stir to combine.
- Add heavy cream or canned coconut milk in 5 increments stirring in between. Cover with plastic food film and let cool.
- Place a cake round on a serving platter and spread with half of coconut filling ensuring to keep 1/2 inch away from edge. Cover with another cake layer and spread remaining coconut mixture on top.
- Place remaining cake layer on top. Frost cake using about 2/3 of chocolate ganache. If ganache has not firmed yet to a consistency of regular frosting do the following: Remove half of ganache from bowl and set bowl over a few ice cubes. Stir constantly until slightly thicker. Wait a few minutes and allow ganache to thicken. If ganache was over chilled and has become too firm to spread, soften in a microwave oven in 3-4 second increments.
- Scatter whole almonds on top. Heat remaining ganache until lukewarm and pour onto almonds and the surface of the cake. Place sliced almonds around bottom edge of cake (if desired).
- Serve cake at room temperature.