I can’t remember who introduced me to the Lazy Daisy cake but, if it was you, thank you very much! It’s been a favorite of mine for years. The cake itself is white, tender, and amazingly simple. The topping, reminiscent of a German Chocolate Cake, is a brown sugar and coconut combination that gets a quick trip under the broiler to make it caramelized and insanely delish.
The recipe is from Fanny Farmer, one of the first cooking school teachers to create a legendary set of cookbooks (her namesake title was re-released under the guides of modern day cooking teacher Marion Cunningham). Her recipes are classics and this is no exception.
This cake comes together in about 30 minutes so even if you’re “not a baker”, it’s a snap to pull off. Hey, they don’t call it “Lazy” for nothing!
Lazy Daisy Cake (inspired by Fanny Farmer)
1 cup cake flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 eggs, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbs butter
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup flaked coconut (I used sweetened but unsweetened works too)
3 tbs butter
2 tbs milk
pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8-inch round cake pan and line the bottom with parchment. Grease the parchment and set the pan aside.
In a bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together the eggs and sugar until very light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add the vanilla and the flour mixture and mix on low speed until just combined. Meanwhile, place the butter and milk in a small pot over medium heat. Bring the mixture just to a boil then remove it from the heat. Add it to the batter, mixing until just combined. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan. Bake the cake until lightly browned on top and the sides begin to pull away from the pan, 20-25 minutes.
While the cake is cooking, make the topping. Combine the brown sugar, coconut, butter, milk, and salt in a small saucepan. Heat over medium low heat, stirring, just until the sugar is no longer grainy, 2-3 minutes.
When the cake is done, remove it from the oven and turn the oven on broil, placing one of the racks about 5 inches from the top. Gently spread the topping mixture over the cake and place the cake under the broiler. WATCH IT CAREFULLY-it needs only a minute or two to brown on top and will go from brown to black in an instant. It should be nicely golden. Let the cake cool on a rack, remove it from the pan, and enjoy.