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Tag Archives: Coconut


Autumn has arrived and at lunch time, I have been in the mood for something a little more warming than a sandwich, so have been opting for soup. Pret do a lovely range and last week I had a delicious corn spicy soup nearly every day. At £2.99 a pop, I started to feel a bit poor and I especially resented spending the money knowing I can make 4-6 portions for roughly the same amount. Feeling inspired,  I decided to try to re-create it and I am pleased to say I did a fine job. The recipe is below.

Serves 4-6

Freezing – Freeze once cooled – defrost over night or in microwave. I like to freeze individual portions so they are ready to take to work.


1 Brown Onion

3 Cloves of garlic

1 Tablespoon Sunflower oil

3 Corn on the cobs (or 3 handfuls of frozen sweet corn)

1 Large potato

1 Inch of fresh ginger

1 Red chilli

3 Stalks of lemongrass

200ml Reduced fat Coconut milk (1/2 standard tin)

1 Litre of veggie stock

Salt and pepper to taste


  • Finely slice the onion, garlic and chilli
  • Peel and grate the ginger
  • Alternatively use a blender to chop the above ingredients
  • Heat oil on a medium heat in a large pan
  • Gently sauté the onion, garlic, chilli and ginger for about 10-12 minutes  until onions are translucent – being careful not to let it burn
  • While this is cooking, chop the potato into little cubes and set aside
  • If you are using fresh corn, slice the corn off the cob and set aside with potato retaining the cobs
  • If you are using frozen corn skip the above step
  • Peel and chop the ends off the lemongrass and score it several times with a knife
  • Add the potato, corn and lemongrass and stock to the onion mixture
  • If you have fresh cobs add these too as they will add flavour
  • Bring to the boil then turn down the heat and simmer for 25 minutes
  • Remove the lemongrass and corn if you used fresh corn
  • Add the coconut milk and heat through
  • Split the mixture in two and blend half until smooth
  • Return the blended mixture to the unblended mixture and stir
  • Serve – lovely with crusty bread


I like to call this my Tropical Victoria Sponge. I made this recipe up and baked it for the first time today. Unfortunately the photo does not do it justice but I would urge you to give it a try as it is delicious, even my husband who doesn’t like coconut, liked this. The fact that you can only see half the cake is testament to its yumminess, as we ate half before I even  got round to photographing it.


For the sponge

150g Unsalted butter – room temperature

150g Caster Sugar

3 Eggs

150g Self Raising Flour + extra for flouring the tins

1.5 Teaspoon Baking Powder

1 Teaspoon Vanilla Essence

Zest 1 lime

1 Tablespoon Desiccated Coconut

For the buttercream

75g Unsalted butter – room temperature

170g Icing sugar + extra for dusting

4 Teaspoons Desiccated Coconut

The Juice of 1 Lime

To fill

3 Tablespoons Lime Marmalade


  • Heat the oven to 180c, Gas Mark 4.
  • Grease two round sponge tins with butter
  • Line the tins with baking paper
  • Flour the tins tipping away any excess flour
  • Place the butter and caster sugar in a bowl
  • Mix until pale and fluffy – I find this is better with an electric whisk
  • Add the vanilla essence
  • Add one egg and a tablespoon of flour
  • Whisk briefly until combined
  • Repeat this process with the other two eggs (always with a tablespoon of flour)
  • Tip in the left over flour, baking powder, lime zest, and desiccated coconut. Whisk well
  • Divide the mixture between the two tins and bake in the centre of the oven for 25 minutes
  • When ready the top should look golden and if you put a cocktail stick in the centre of the cake it will come out dry. If still wet, leave for a few minutes and check again
  • When ready leave to cool on wire racks removing the baking paper from bottom


  • For the icing, add the icing sugar, lime, butter and desiccated coconut to a bowl
  • Whilst until you have a pale and fluffy butter cream, once again I find this works best with a whisk
  • When sponges have cooled take one cake and turn it over so the browner side is on top, place it on a plate or cake stand (I wish I had remembered to use mine!).
  • Spread it with the lime marmalade
  • Spread the other cake which should be bottom up – pale side on top (like the one in photo above) with the butter cream
  • Carefully place the cake with the buttercream on top of the cake with the lime marmalade and the buttercream are in the middle of the cake and the browner part of the cake is on top
  • Dust the cake with icing sugar using a sieve
  • Cut and enjoy!