Friday, August 19, 2011

Coconutty Frosting and a Nationality Dinner

Our Young Adults group at church hosted a Nationality Dinner for our August meeting. The email invite said: "Please bring a special dish or drink from your own nationality to share with others."

My husband and I couldn't decide what nationality to claim: I come from a Dutch background, he's German and Scottish, and neither one of us has a strong tie to a specific food of "the mother country" (Besides my pickled herring, but my husband strongly vetoed that one right away!)

So we brainstormed for a few weeks, made fun of each other's ethnicities, bragged about how our children wouldn't pickup each other's stereotypical ethnic traits, ya know, typical marriage banter, until finally we were T-minus 4 days away. A compromise needed to be made.

It finally came down to: my Great-Grandmother's Dutch Chocolate Cake, topped with German Chocolate Cake Frosting. (This recipe is one I mostly associate with that type of frosting, as my husband wasn't the one recipe hunting for frosting recipes, so I made the call) But a delicious cake is still a delicious cake, no matter if the recipe came through Ellis Island. And this is delicious cake!

At the dinner, there was English Bread Pudding, Mom's Special Meatloaf, Indiana Poppy Seed Casserole, Filipino Chicken Adobo & Rice, Minestrone Soup, Lasagna, and French Dessert Crepes. It was a great potluck. My son was highly impressed by the Triscuits, so much for expanding his food palate!

Coconutty Frosting
recipe adapted from Southern Living Slow Cooker Recipes
Makes 4 1/4 cups
I made a 1/2 recipe for a 9 x 13 inch pan

1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup butter
4 egg yolks, lightly beaten
2 1/2 cups unsweetened coconut flakes (I could only find sweetened)
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans (I used chopped almonds)
2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Combine milk, sugar, butter, and egg yolks in a 3 quart saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat; cook 8 to 10 minutes or until frosting is thickened, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Stir in coconut, pecans, and vanilla. Let cool.

Here is my cake with frosting distributed all over the cake, (resist the urge to grab fingerfuls off this...I dare you!)

and here is the cake, ready for the potluck!

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