Thursday 4 June 2015

Lime and coconut cake, glazed tofu and mistaken identity

On my recent In My Kitchen post I showed you a haul of lemons and limes from our trees in the backyard.  You might not have noticed that they were all yellow.  I am never sure when green limes are ripe and often they are yellow by the time they come off the tree.  Which means that when stormy weather blows the fruit off the tree I might get my lemons and limes confused.  It brings up awkward moments when I think I have made a lime and coconut cake but wonder if it is in fact a lemon and coconut cake.

Of course there are clues.  Opening up the fruit and finding it green usually means it is a lime.  But because I was unsure about some of the windfall fruit, I worried some of it was actually unripe lemons.  So I am now relying on the Meyer lemons having quite smooth and bright yellow skins to tell them apart.  However when I made lemonade this week I did find myself opening a lemon only to find it is a lime.

You might attribute my uncertainty to my decision to whip up this cake quickly after school when I was helping Sylvia with readers and ukelele practice and getting dinner ready.  It was that easy to put together quickly but afterwards I worried I had confused the lemons and limes.

My mum visited the next day and had a slice of cake with a cuppa.  She assured me that it was lime.  Then she had another slice and took a slice home for my dad.  Often my mum finds cakes quite sweet but she loved this one.  The cake disappeared rather quickly.

I attribute my mum's love of the cake to my decision to reduce the icing sugar by half.  It meant that the icing was more of a glaze and quite tart.  It was so thin that it dribbled down the sides and pooled at the bottom of the cake.  Possibly half the glaze would be enough.  I used a whole lime because I have lots of limes and the cake was made to use up some of them.

This is a simple old fashioned recipe.  The cake is yellow and buttery with the slight texture of coconut and that wonderful taste of coconut sprinkled in the icing.  It is the sort of cake I could imagine in my grandmothers' time, though I am not sure that limes were so common then.

And I am sneaking another recipe in here because it also has a case of mistaken identity.  I thought I would used up some cranberry sauce I have had since Christmas.  I used it in a glazed tofu that I adapted from Apricot and Orange Glazed Tofu that I made years ago.  I made it less spicy (without the chilli paste) so that Sylvia would eat it and she loved it.  We had it with some Toby's Singapore Noodles and broccoli.  The noodles were so much nicer with the tofu than eaten alone. 

It was only after I made the tofu that I discovered I had used up the rest of my mum's quince jelly instead of cranberry sauce.  So I will have to make it again and use up the cranberry sauce which is still lurking in the fridge.  Perhaps I could try it with some lime juice instead of orange juice, if only I can tell my limes apart from my lemons.

I am sending the cake to Jen's Food for this month's Credit Crunch Munch, coordinated by Fuss Free Flavours and Fab Food 4 All!  This cake uses basic pantry ingredients and fruit from my backyard.

More citrus cakes from Green Gourmet Giraffe:
Choc-lime marble cake
Chocolate marmalade cake
Citrus grape cake (v)
Cranberry mandarin syrup cake
Lemon and honey cake (gf)
Orange, lavender and almond syrup cake 

More citrus cakes from elsewhere online:
Chocolate, whole orange and almond cake (gf) - Apple and Spice
Flourless orange poppy seed cake (gf) - Chocolate and Zucchini
Gluten free lemon trickle cake (gf) - BBC Good Food
Lemon, buttermilk and black pepper cake - Laws of the Kitchen
Lemon, lavender and honey cake - Amber Rose
Lemon olive oil cake with grilled nectarines (v) - Chef Chloe
Lime coconut and olive oil cake - The Chronicles of Ms I-Hua and The Boy
Sticky lemon and yoghurt cake - The Age Good Food
Yellowman's lime banana bread - Taking Julia North

Lime and coconut cake
Slightly adapted from Frills in the Hills

2 limes, zest and juice
50 grams dessicated coconut
175 grams butter or margarine, softened
150 grams caster sugar
175 grams self raising flour
3 eggs

1 cup icing sugar
1 lime, zest and juice
dessicated coconut for sprinkling
extra lime zest for decoration

Grease and line a 20cm ring tin.  Preheat oven to 180 C.  Mix lime juice, zest and coconut in a small bowl.  Mix remaining ingredients in a medium mixing bowl and add coconut mixture.  Scrape mixture into prepared tin and bake for 35 to 40 minutes until golden brown and a skewer inserted in the cake comes out clean.  Cool on a wire rack. 

Mix icing sugar with lime zest and juice and spread over cooled cake.  Sprinkle generously with coconut.  Scatter with extra zest.

Quince and orange glazed tofu
Adapted from Green Gourmet Giraffe
Serves 2 to 3

250g extra firm tofu 
1 tbsp oil for frying

1 tbsp quince jelly (or cranberry sauce)
1 tbsp tamari
juice of 1 orange
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 tsp seeded mustard
1 tsp chilli paste (optional)
small pinch of black pepper

Pat tofu with a paper towel and slice into thick fingers.  Mix marinade ingredients in a shallow tub.  Place tofu in marinade for 15 minutes to overnight, depending on your timing.  Heat oil on a large frypan.  Add tofu (shake off as much marinade as possible) and fry on medium high until lightly golden brown on each side.  Add marinade carefully - the oil will splatter with the addition of liquids.  Continue to fry and turn the tofu until the marinade thickens into a glaze and the tofu is golden brown.

On the Stereo:
Fourteen Autumns and Fifteen Winters: The Twilight Sad


  1. I often get confused with yellow limes and lemons too...should just use them before they turn yellow I reckon...
    Your cake looks so yummy! I know what to do with that big bag of limes I got now.

    1. Thanks Jenny - I always intend to pick the limes when they are greener but then I get confused about when they are ripe!

  2. I love citrus cake! No limes and lemons grow here, though.

    I see that your city has one of the top 50 worldwide restaurants! Have you been there?

    1. Thanks Mae - unfortunately I don't really get along to the high end of the restaurants in Melbourne.

  3. Luckily I like lemons and limes in equal measure and am generally happy to substitute one for the other - but I nonetheless appreciate that it must be concerning not to know which are which! This cake looks lovely either way though and coconut does go particularly well with citrus.

    1. Thanks Kari - I did reassure myself that if it was lemons it wouldn't be so bad but I do much prefer lime and coconut together.

  4. Haha its a lemon lime lucky dip. Either would be delicious with the coconut. Love the ring shape too. That tofu looks amazing

    1. Thanks Katie - lucky dip indeed - and I do love ring cakes - it is much less likely you will get an uncooked centre as well :-)

  5. Lemon (or lime!) cake has always been my favourite! And lime & coconut is such a fantastic combination too.

    1. Thanks Emma - it is a great flavour combination - but I am not a huge fan of lemon cakes

  6. how lovely to have an abundance of lemons and limes. I'm not able to grow much at all but used to have citrus in a previous home and it was always such a joy to think of ways of using the fruit. I also used to make a lot of lemon and lime cakes with a citrus glaze. I always loved a more runny glaze with more juice and less sugar to give it that tart flavour - I would love a slice of your yummy cake xx

    1. Thanks Charlie - it is a lovely problem to have. I love feeling I can use as much lemon or lime juice as possible rather than having to go easy on them. I would love to share this cake with you - I think you would love the glaze because you could really taste the juice in it - and it did look pretty when it wasn't pooling on the bottom of the plate

  7. The cake looks amazing! I did a lemon yoghurt cake this week with a zesty glaze - I really enjoy them when they have a bit of tartness rather than overbearing sweetness. Lime and coconut is a great combo, reminds me of a cocktail!

    1. Thanks Caeli - lime and coconut is like the sort of cocktail I would enjoy - I agree that citrus cakes should retain some of the tartness - I really like the zest because it is so much more intense than just the juice.

  8. The cake sounds delicious!! I love this kind of cake.

  9. I just can't stop staring at that cake! Lime and coconut are my favorites together!

  10. Love this cake and having made a lime cake I know it tastes fabulous but I'm liking the addition of coconut here and as I have a bag that needs using up you have inspired me! Thanks for linking up to #CreditCrunchMunch:-)

    1. Thanks Camilla - a bag of coconut to use up? I always have a bag of coconut in my kitchen in case I run out of the supplies in my coconut container - it is one of my pantry staples! But limes come and go with the seasons!

  11. I had no idea that limes went yellow eventually! How confusing is that? It sounds a bit like citrus roulette!
    The cake looks amazingly moist and delicious though.... I am not surprised it disappeared quickly and that your mum snaffled a load!

    1. Thanks Kate - limes are very confusing - either they are green and look like the unripe ones or they are yellow and look like the lemons but citrus roulette has fun moments!

  12. Haha - I have mistaken identity issues with citrus fruit at times as well. Especially sweet limes since they are technically limes, but the taste really reminds me of lemon and doesn't do anything for my pad thai. Your cake looks delicious, I think lemon or lime could work quite well in it =)

    1. Thanks Kimmy - I have wondered if the yellow limes are sweeter than the green ones because they have ripened more and that is one of the reasons I get them confused with lemons - or is that just my excuse for my confusion ????

  13. I still have a jar of cranberry sauce from Christmas in the fridge! Love the tofu use for it. Thanks for sending the cake to Credit Crunch Munch

  14. I love lime and coconut together in a cake though I reckon lemon would be pretty good too. How lovely to be able to grow your own citrus fruits. Thanks for sharing with Credit Crunch Munch :)


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