Saturday night was movie night and, as always, we were standing around ogling the massive amounts of food we seemed to have for a few people. My friend Karen mentioned that she had made Ina Garten's Coconut Cake that day for her mother's birthday.
It planted a seed, mainly because I had purchased way too much coconut for a cookie recipe, so I pulled out my copy of Barefoot Contessa At Home and read through the recipe. I had everything I needed...5 sticks of butter and 1 lb of cream cheese. Oh, Ina, you are my hero.
I mixed up the batter and placed my two 9" pans in the oven at 350 as per the recipe. The recipe said to bake for 45 to 50 minutes, so I set the timer for 45 minutes. About 23 minutes into the baking, I began to smell the cake. And while it smelled wonderful, I've always followed the rule of thumb that if you smell it, it's done. I did not trust my instincts, however, and let it continue to bake.
I finally gave up and checked at the 30 minute mark and sure enough, the cake was no longer that lovely golden brown one likes to see on a cake, it was brown. The color of a vanilla wafer. I let it cool and iced it and took it to work yesterday. It was eaten but the small sample I tasted was very dry. Delicious, but dry.
Research of other coconut cake recipes show a baking time of 25 to 30 minutes. Oops! I suppose everyone is entitled to a mistake, but Ina, your pedestal is beginning to look a little shaky.