Poached peach, vanilla bean and coconut cake.

by Gypsy and the Botanist


Peaches are in their prime right now, so I couldn’t resist making their beautiful coral coloured flesh the star of this cake. To make sure the peaches didn’t take the moisture out of the cake, I poached them first with vanilla beans and some cloves for extra depth. In honour of summer, I made this a coconut cake to keep things light and creamy. I used shredded coconut for the texture, but if you prefer, desiccated coconut will work too.



200g unsalted butter, softened

200g white caster sugar

200g plain flour

4 eggs

1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped

2tsp bicarbonate of soda

A pinch of salt

100g shredded coconut

2tbsp natural yoghurt

150ml buttermilk


Poached peaches

5 peaches, sliced into 8 wedges each

1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped

7 cloves

50g brown sugar

100ml water




Preheat the oven to 180C.

To poach the peaches, place the sliced wedges into a saucepan, along with the scraped seeds of the vanilla bean, the cloves, brown sugar and water. Bring to the boil, then with a lid over the pan, let them simmer for approximately 10-15 minutes. You want them soft, but still keeping their shape. Set aside.

Beat the butter and sugar, for approximately 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy. On a low speed, add the eggs, one at a time, until each is incorporated. Then add the half of the flour, the salt and bicarbonate of soda, and beat until incorporated. Add the yoghurt, the scraped seeds of the vanilla bean, and half of the buttermilk, beating until incorporated. Add the shredded coconut. Then add the remaining flour and buttermilk.

In a lined and greased 18cm round pan, pour a bit of the cake mixture in so that the bottom of the pan is covered. Then arrange some of the poached peaches, and then pour over with the remaining cake mixture. On top, arrange the remaining peaches. Keep the remaining peach syrup. Bake for approximately 40-50 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Remove from the oven, and allow to cool in the tin for 20-30 minutes, then move onto a wire wrack, and allow to cool completely.

Once the cake has cooled, drizzle the remaining peach syrup over the cake.



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