Aunt Maud's Fresh Coconut Cake

Who is Aunt Maud?

Aunt Maud could have been Julia Child’s friend. She grew up in the rough landscape of Western Oklahoma when times were not easy, but later in life she enjoyed cooking and sharing some of the most spectacular dishes. This was especially useful since she wanted me and my sisters to know about entertaining. I recently made this cake for my sister’s birthday. It seemed to bring back memories of Aunt Maud.
Only use unsweetened, fresh coconut. I like it grated fine for the layer of filling and grated a bit more coarse for the layer on top. Do not let the icing scare you; it’s super easy!
— Alice Dahlgren

Best when the cake and filling are prepared a day or two ahead and frost the day it is served.


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Grease and flour 3 round cake pans and cut wax paper to fit the bottom of each one.
  • 1 scant c. of butter
  • 6 large or 7 medium egg yolks (save the whites for the filling)
  • 1 T. baking powder  and  ½ c. milk
  • 1 c. milk
  • 2 c. sugar
  • 3 c. cake flour (sifted 3 times)
  • ½ c. milk
  • 1 t. vanilla


  1. Beat sugar and butter in a mixer until it is light and fluffy.
  2. Add egg yolks one at a time until batter begins to form.
  3. Dissolve 1 T. baking powder in ½ c. milk and add to the batter.
  4. Continue beating until well blended.
  5. Add vanilla.
  6. Add 1 c. milk alternately with the re-sifted cake flour.
  7. Divide into cake pans.
  8. Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes.
  9. Use a toothpick (stick it into the middle of the cake pan) to see when done.  It should come out clean (no batter).
  10. Cool on racks.
  11. Invert onto a serving plate and ice with filling
  12. Position the next cake on top and ice.
  13. Follow with the 3rd.
  14. Refrigerate.