This recipe combines two of my favorite things: coquito and tres leches cake. The cake is the traditional tres leches cake with shredded coconut. The coquito used in this recipe is family friendly making this cake a coconut lover's dream.
What is Coquito?
Coquito is a seasonal Puerto Rican cocktail made for the holidays. Coquito is Spanish for "little coconut." It's made using evaporated milk, cream of coconut, coconut milk, condensed milk, spices and rum. It's a cherished beverage with rich culture, traditions and passionate admirers of its own.
What is tres leches cake?
Tres leches translates to three milks. It is a dessert that has become popular throughout all of Central and South America as well as the Caribbean. Some historians believe it originated in Mexico, others identify Nicaragua as its originator and there's also a group that believes tres leches cake came from Costa Rica. No one really knows where it started, but we all know its delicious.
The cake is typically a buttery sponge cake that is soaked in a combination of evaporated milk, condensed milk and heavy cream. The cake is then topped with meringue or whipped cream.
Do you have to use regular coquito for this recipe?
If children are going to consume this coquito tres leches cake, then I recommend NOT using regular boozy coquito. Regular coquito like the one I usually make has a lot of rum in it and is not intended for child consumption. Instead, for this recipe I made an alcohol light (2 oz of rum) coquito version. The 2 oz is just enough to give it flavor.
How to store this coquito tres leches cake?
This coquito tres leches cake must be stored in the refrigerator. You can store it in the fridge for upto 3 days in an airtight container.
What equipment do you need for this coquito tres leches recipe?
Want more Hispanic inspired recipes? Try these:
Coquito Tres Leches Cake
- FOR THE CAKE
- 1 ¾ cup all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup butter melted and cooled
- 3 tablespoon coconut oil melted and cooled
- 5 large eggs
- 1 ¼ cup white sugar
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoon rum
- ¾ cup sweetened shredded coconut
- FOR THE MILK MIXTURE
- 1 can coconut condensed milk
- 1 can coconut evaporated milk
- 1 can cream of coconut
- 2 oz rum
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- FOR THE MERINGUE
- 4 egg whites
- 1 cup white sugar
- ¼ Cup water
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
- ¼ Teaspoon salt
- ¼ Teaspoon cream of tartar
- Set oven to 325 degrees F and place rack in middle position.
- Grease and flour a 13-by-9 inch pan and set aside and set it aside.
- Place flour, baking powder and salt in a medium-size bowl, mix and set aside.
- With an electric mixer, beat the eggs one by one on a medium speed, for about 1 minute until they're very fluffy.
- Slowly add the sugar until all sugar is incorporated.
- Reduce speed of mixer, and slowly add the melted butter and coconut oil, little bit little, then the vanilla and finally the rum. Keep the mixer running in low. Make sure the butter isn't too hot because it will flatten your batter.
- Add the flour mixture and coconut in slowly and gently fold with a spatula until well combined. DO NOT OVER MIX.
- Transfer batter to your prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes or until a wooden toothpick comes out clean when inserted in the center of the cake.
- Remove the cake and transfer to a wired rack to cool completely. Poke the top of the cake using a toothpick, skewer or fork all over.
- For the milk mixture:
- Whisk coconut condensed milk, coconut evaporated milk and cream of coconut together with the cinnamon , nutmeg and vanilla in a large sauce pan, warm over low heat until completed mixed. Remove from heat and stir in your rum and set aside.
- Once the cake has cooled slowly pour the coconut milk mixture over the cake, cover with a plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
- For the Meringue:
- In a small saucepan, combine the sugar with water and simmer over medium high heat, without stirring, until the syrup reaches 238° on a candy thermometer or about 8 minutes have passed.
- In a standing mixer with the whisk, beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar and salt at medium speed until soft peaks form.
- Gradually drizzle in the hot syrup and beat at high speed until the meringue just holds stiff, glossy peaks. Beat in the vanilla.
- Gently spread the meringue over the cake using a spatula.
- Before serving, use a kitchen torch to carefully brown the meringue tips all over the cake.