If you’re looking for a crowd-pleasing gluten-free celebration cake, this could be the one: two layers of passion fruit and coconut cake sandwiched with coconut and lime buttercream.
Equipment and preparation: you will need 2 x 20cm/8in springform cake tins and an electric hand-held whisk.
For the cakes
- 350g/12oz unsalted butter, softened
- 350g/12oz caster sugar
- 4 passion fruit, pulp, and seeds scooped out
- 250g/9oz rice flour
- 2 tsp xanthan gum, available in many large supermarkets or online
- 4 tsp gluten-free baking powder
- 6 large free-range eggs
- 100g/3½oz desiccated coconut
For the buttercream
- 150g/5½oz unsalted butter, softened
- 200g/7oz icing sugar
- 2 unwaxed limes, zest only, grated
- 2 tbsp coconut cream
- 2 tsp white coconut-flavored rum (optional)
For the syrup
- 2 passion fruit, pulp, and seeds scraped out
- 2 limes, juice only
- 100g/3½oz caster sugar
- Preheat the oven to 180C/170C (fan)/Gas 4. Lightly butter 2x 20cm/8in springform cake tins and line with baking parchment.
- Using an electric hand-held whisk, cream the butter, sugar, and passion fruit in a large mixing bowl.
- In a separate bowl, sift together the rice flour, xanthan gum, and baking powder.
- Add a spoonful of the flour mixture and one egg to the butter and sugar mixture, beating in thoroughly. Add the rest of the eggs, one by one, adding a spoonful of the flour mixture each time. Fold in the rest of the flour, and then fold in the desiccated coconut.
- Divide the mixture equally between the two tins and bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the top is golden-brown and a wooden skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
- While the cakes are in the oven, make the buttercream by creaming together the butter, icing sugar, and lime zest in a bowl until light and fluffy.
- Add the coconut cream and coconut rum (if using) and beat until thoroughly combined. Set aside.
- Shortly before the cakes are ready, make the syrup. Combine the passion fruit juice with the lime juice, then add the sugar, stirring to dissolve. ( You may need to heat in a small pan or give it a blast in the microwave in a heatproof jug.) Strain the syrup but reserve the passion fruit seeds.
- When the cakes are baked, remove them from the oven and prick them all over with a wooden skewer. Pour over the strained syrup and leave to cool in the tins.
- When the cakes are cool, turn out one of the layers onto the serving plate and spread or pipe over the coconut buttercream. Place the other cake layer on top.
- Scatter the passion fruit seeds in the middle of the cake, and cut them into slices to serve.