Coconut cake with blackberry mousse

Coconut cake with blackberry mousse

I work in a restaurant that has a candy dispenser. If I have two quarters left over at the end of the day, I’ll sometimes bring home small cups of candy to my boys. Twenty-five cents worth a piece. I always bring M&Ms to my little one, and skittles to my older son. It seems funny that their love for fruity or chocolate-y candy has become a defining characteristic for them. One small way to be their own boy. And an easy way to divide the spoils come Halloween or Easter! I made a cake for my brother and father the other day (they both have February birthdays). I know they like chocolate (who doesn’t?) but I always think of them as falling towards the fruity end of the sweet spectrum. So…flush from my success with the chocolate drambuie mousse, I decided to make them a coconut cake with blackberry mousse in between the layers. This being February, when raspberries and blackberries seem to cost about $10 a piece, I used blackberry jam instead of fresh fruit. (Honestly, if you have fresh raspberries, don’t you just eat them? Exactly as they are?) The mousse is actually a white chocolate blackberry mousse, because I didn’t want to use gelatin, and I thought the chocolate would help to make the mousse more substantial, once it un-melted. It isn’t a difficult cake to make, but the assembly process does have a few messy-fun steps.

Here’s Doc Watson’s Blackberry Rag.


2 sticks of unsalted, softened butter (1 cup)
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 t. vanilla
2 egg yolks/ 5 egg whites (save the yolks for the mousse!)
pinch cream of tartar
2 cups flour
1 t baking powder
1 t baking soda
1/t salt
1 cup coconut – processed slightly into a gravelly consistency
3/4 cup milk

Cream the butter and the sugar. Add the vanilla and egg yolks and beat till light and fluffy (ish). Add all of the dry ingredients and mix well. Add the milk and mix until you have a thick but easily mixed batter. A bit like whipped cream.

Whip the egg whites and cream of tartar till they’re quite stiff, and fold/mix them into the batter.

Pour into two 8 or 9 inch prepared pans, and cook at 375 for 20 -30 minutes till they’re lightly browned on top and spring back when you touch them.


3 egg yolks (see?)
2 T water
1/3 cup rum
1/3 cup blackberry jam
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup heavy cream whipped till quite stiff.

Melt the chocolate chips in a pan over a pan of hot water.

In another pan over a pan of hot water, whisk the egg yolks with the water till they’re light and foamy and just starting to thicken. Add the rum and jam. Whisk whisk whisk whisk whisk whisk – For 8 to 10 minutes till the mixture is thick and custardy.

Put it in a cool bowl. Add the melted chocolate. (Whisk it in!) Allow this mixture to cool, and then fold in the whipped cream.


4 T very soft salted butter
2 cups confectioner’s sugar
2 or 3 T milk
1 or 2 t. framboise

More whisking!! Cream the butter, add the sugar, whisk in the milk and framboise. Keep whisking till you have a smooth and creamy frosting. It’s quite fun, actually! You can add just enough milk to make it as thick as you like.


Allow each cake to cool completely, and then carefully cut them in half with a long knife. Put one on a plate, spoon about 1/3 of the mousse on it, and spread it, but not all the way to the edge. Put another slice of cake on top. Spread 1/3 of mousse on, but still about 1 inch from the edge. Put another piece of cake on top, add the final 1/3 of mousse, spread out as before. Put your prettiest, evenest piece of cake on top. Spread the buttercream frosting all around.

I put the whole cake in the fridge so the mousse and frosting could set. About 1/2 hour, maybe?


2 thoughts on “Coconut cake with blackberry mousse

  1. Hello, Abi!

    I won’t lie, it’s very tasty…I think you could throw coconut and blackberry together in anything and it would be nice. And not too hard to make, either.

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