My favorite Girl Scout cookies are Samoas, or Caramel deLites. I love the soft and chewy coconut, caramel, and chocolate topping over the crunchy vanilla cookie. After seeing friends post this link from Pinterest on their Facebook pages, I decided to check out the recipe -- just to see what the hype was all about.
Not only does this cake look exactly like a Samoa, but it has all of the components to give it that rich caramel-coconut-chocolate flavor.
Yes, it may have a bunch of steps, yes, it might take you a while to make, and yes, your kitchen will look like a bomb went off, but it is so worth it.
This cake uses two batters to create a swirl of brown sugar cake and rich chocolate cake. To make your life a whole lot easier, I suggest measuring the dry ingredients for each batter first.
For the brown sugar batter measure 3/4 cup of All-Purpose flour, or cake flour, 3/4 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda and 1/4 teaspoon salt. For the chocolate batter, measure 3/4 cup and two tablespoons All-Purpose flour, or cake flour, 1/2 cup and two tablespoons cocoa powder (this will give it the rich chocolate flavor), 3/4 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda and 1/2 teaspoon of salt.
Once you complete that step, begin to make the brown sugar batter by creaming a stick of unsalted butter and one cup of dark brown sugar. Add two eggs, beating after each addition, then add 1/2 cup whole milk. Incorporate the pre-measured dry ingredients to complete the first batter.
For the chocolate batter, beat 1/4 cup vegetable oil with one cup granulated sugar. Add one egg, one teaspoon of vanilla and 1/2 cup whole milk. Mix in the dry ingredients until smooth.
After you have greased and floured your bundt cake pan, add 1/2 cup boiling water to the chocolate batter. When you blend the two batters together in the cake pan, the chocolate batter needs to be runny enough to create a natural swirl within the thicker brown sugar batter.
Pour part of the brown sugar batter into the cake pan, then add the same amount of chocolate batter. Continue to add both batters to the cake pan until everything has been incorporated.
While the cake bakes for 50 minutes at 350 degrees, prepare the frosting. You can do this step ahead of time or while your cake bakes, depending on which method you prefer.
The can of sweetened condensed milk needs to be caramelized to make the caramel frosting. If you prefer to boil the can in a pot of water for four hours, prepare it before you begin to make the cake; if you prefer to cook it stove top, like I did, directly in a pot, then you can make it while the cake bakes. Either way, the condensed milk will caramelize and will change from a creamy color to golden brown.
After you have created the caramel, let it cool and beat 1/2 cup confectioners sugar, two tablespoons of vanilla extract, two sticks of unsalted butter and 1/2 teaspoon of salt with the can of caramel. The frosting will be smooth and extremely sweet ... just the way I like it. Add one cup of toasted coconut to the frosting and chill for at least one hour in the refrigerator.
The cake will be extremely dark when it comes out of the oven. Don't panic! It is not burnt. The chocolate batter overpowers the brown sugar batter, so it will appear darker than expected, but this is exactly like the chocolate coating on the bottom of Caramel deLites.
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Once the cake cools, top the entire cake with the coconut-caramel frosting, cover the frosting with more toasted coconut and drizzle melted chocolate in lines across the cake to resemble the Samoa cookie.
The cake is fluffy, delicate and chocolatey. This is a beautiful cake inside and out.