This cake is a play on my Chocoflan Cake. I was making a Chocoflan Cake for Cinco de Mayo and I started thinking how fun it would be to make a coconut flavored flan cake, so I went out to buy ingredients for a test drive. It took a few trial runs over the next few weekends, but eventually my Cocoflan Cake was born! Thankfully my family doesn’t mind being the guinea pigs who have to taste and EAT all my kitchen experiments.
I like how this final version turned out. The dessert isn’t overly sweet, the cake is moist, and the flan is smooth and creamy. It looks like a lot of steps, but if you read through the recipe, it’s really not hard to do. Give it a try and you’ll see what I mean.
- 1 cup white sugar
- ¼ cup water
- ½ cup macapuno, you can add more if you like
- 4 ozs. (½ box) cream cheese
- 1 can (14 oz.) condensed milk
- 1 can (13.5 oz.) unsweetened coconut milk
- 5 eggs
- 1 Tbsp. coconut extract
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ tsp. baking powder
- ¼ tsp. baking soda
- ¾ cup cream of coconut (or coconut milk)
- 2 tsp. coconut extract
- ½ cup butter, at room temperature
- ¼ cup coconut oil
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 large eggs
Make the Topping:
- Combine sugar and water in a small saucepan and place on stove over low heat.
- Let come to a boil and continue to cook until sugar starts to caramelize. Watch it carefully! The sugar can burn in an instant.
- Once the sugar starts turning reddish brown, take it off the heat immediately. It will continue to darken and you don’t want it getting bitter.
- Pour the sugar syrup into a bundt pan and swirl the bundt pan around so the sugar syrup coats the bottom and about an inch up the sides of the pan. Be careful. The bundt pan will get very hot so use oven mitts!
- Put the bundt pan down on a trivet.
- Distribute the macapuno evenly over the sugar syrup.
- Set the bundt pan aside to cool.
Prepare the Flan:
- Place cream cheese in a medium bowl and heat in microwave for about 30 – 40 seconds so the cream cheese becomes very soft.
- Add the condensed milk to the softened cream cheese and whisk vigorously together with a wire whisk until well-blended and very smooth.
- Add the coconut milk, eggs, and coconut extract, and whisk together well.
- Set flan mixture aside while you prepare the cake batter.
Make the Cake:
- Prepare a water bath by placing a roasting pan half full of water into the oven.
- Turn oven on to 350ºF to preheat.
- In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and baking soda.
- In another small bowl, stir the cream of coconut and coconut extract together.
- With an electric mixer set on high speed, beat butter and coconut oil together until smooth.
- Slowly add sugar, continuing to beat until pale and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes.
- Reduce speed to medium and add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down sides of bowl as needed.
- Reduce speed to low, and add flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with 2 batches of cream of coconut mixture.
- Beat until just combined.
- Pour the cake batter on top of the macapuno-sugar syrup in the bundt pan, smoothing the batter evenly with a rubber spatula.
- Slowly pour the flan mixture through a sieve over the cake batter. Don’t worry if it sinks or causes the batter to separate in clumps.
- Cover bundt pan tightly with a piece of tin foil and place into water bath in oven.
- Bake for 1 hour, then remove foil and bake uncovered for 30 minutes more or until cake springs back when touched lightly in the center.
- Remove from water bath and allow to cool to room temperature; then place in refrigerator to chill for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
- To serve, invert cake onto a large cake plate or serving platter.
- This cake is best prepared a day or two in advance and kept chilled in the fridge until ready to serve.
- Macapuno is a Filipino delicacy. It’s basically shredded young coconut that’s been cooked in syrup to preserve it. It’s sold in jars in Asian food markets. If you can’t find macapuno, you can omit it from this recipe.