To make the cake: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter
a 9 by 13-inch cake pan
. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the eggs and sugar until pale and fluffy. Add the flour, baking powder, and vanilla extract
; mix until just combined. Transfer the batter
to the prepared pan. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center tests clean. Cool completely on a wire rack. Meanwhile, make coconut cream filling.
For the coconut cream filling: In a large bowl, whisk together 3/4 cup sugar, coconut milk, yolks, shredded coconut and cornstarch. In a large saucepan, combine milk and remaining 3/4 cup sugar; heat over medium until sugar dissolves and milk is steaming
. Gradually whisk
the hot milk into egg mixture; return the custard mixture to the saucepan. Cook, stirring, until custard thickens, 3 to 4 minutes. Pour the custard
into a heat-proof bowl. Cover the surface directly with the plastic wrap
. Set aside to cool completely, about 1 hour (or up to overnight in the refrigerator). While coconut cream and cake cool, make cake syrup
For the simple syrup
: Combine water and sugar in a medium saucepan
; bring to a boil. Transfer to a bowl with coconut milk
and rum; stir to combine.
For the meringue
: Combine 3/4 cup sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar, for 4 minutes. In the bowl of an electric mixer
, beat the egg whites and remaining 1 tablespoon sugar. With the motor running, gradually beat in the syrup mixture in a slow, steady stream.
To assemble the cake: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Use a serrated knife to cut cake crosswise into 2 layers. Brush the bottom layer with syrup and spread with coconut cream. Add the second cake layer and repeat with syrup and coconut cream
. Spread the meringue over the cake. Transfer the cake to the oven for 2 to 3 minutes or until the meringue is toasted.
This recipe was provided by professional chefs and has been scaled down from a bulk recipe provided by a restaurant. The Food Network Kitchens chefs have not tested this recipe, in the proportions indicated, and therefore, we cannot make any representation as to the results.