#44, Devil’s Food Cake with Seven-Minute Icing and Coconut

This is the same recipe Allysa’s family has made for every birthday since the beginning of time, and the same cake we served at the bakery—but a different icing and the coconut garnish give it a whole new taste.


I promised to bake a birthday cake for three of my students whose birthday’s are in November. I told them to choose any Magnolia Bakery recipe that I had not yet cooked and that I would make it for them. They chose Devil’s Food Cake. I chose the version in the book with the seven-minute icing and coconut.

Helas! This is all that is left


of this


But, it started like this..


and then turned into this

camoji (1)

which folded into this…..


then lastly to this (see below)

camoji (2)

MY CUP OVERFLOWETHED: The recipe called for three 9 x 2 inch cake pans. As I poured the batter in, I thought that the pans were too full and that a fourth pan could have been used. I was right. The cakes rose and poured over the sides of the pans – not disastrously. When a cake overflows the pan, the cake is actually pulled back down and flattened a bit. I was worried that the cake would not cook correctly throughout and there was a fear that the edges would burn. These fears did not come true. I just trimmed the droopy edges off and all was fine.

CONFETTI COCONUT: Dried, sweetened coconut is not available in Doha; at least I have never found it. Family Foods has freshly shredded coconut available sometimes. (Request at the vegetable weigh stations.) I recently found frozen, unsweetened coconut at Mega Mart. I toasted the shredded coconut in the oven (5 minutes under low broil). I didn’t try to sweeten it because the icing was already SO sweet. I had FUN throwing the coconut onto the iced cake. It turned out rather well.

#17 Seven-Minute Icing, p. 132

“This classic American marshmallow-like frosting is a childhood favorite of many.”(p. 132)


This brief post is just about icing, the Seven-Minute Icing. This is my first time to make a cooked icing and I didn’t do a great job with it. On the other hand, I did have fun trying and believe I’ve learned something.


I’ve borrowed a couple of photos from the web to illustrate the difference between a true success and something less.

True success. Look at that standing peak. This icing will stay where you put it, and hold any shape yet remain soft.
Successful, but just barely. Could use another minute or so of whipping. Mine needed more time under the mixer. It wouldn’t stand up.

Now, why am I writing about an icing instead of what was baked and needing a good frost job? Well, with students having a day off from school and needing to fill time productively, my daughter decided to bake a cake. I think it turned out rather well. It’s just kind-uh hard to pin her down on the recipe she used. Anyhooo, she left the icing job for me. So, here we are. Here’s a picture of the finished product:

It has potential. Don’t you think?

Let me explain. This is what I did to get what you see:

  1. Sliced off the puffed-up top of each cake layer.
  2. Spread a layer of raspberry jam and icing in the middle.
  3. Placed the second cake layer upside down on top of the first.
  4. Iced the whole thing (sides included). Hmmmmmmm.

DETOUR: I went for, “gotta get this done”, instead of “gotta do this right.” The sides of the cake layers were not straight up and down (Gotta get new pans!), so I ended up with a cake that looked like a flying saucer that bulged in the middle.


To make things worse, the two layers wanted to slip and slide and not stay put. So I let it sit overnight and gave it some thought. The next day, I decided to attempt carving the cake to give it straight sides – and was pretty successful (don’t you think?). I left the icing alone, leaving the sides as you see in the photo above. I’m gonna let French 3 students be the ones to judge.

Until proven otherwise, I think my daughter and I made a pretty good, pretty good lookin’ cake.

See ya later!