Sunday, January 29, 2012

Yuzu Mango Coconut Cake Shooters

What can I say, but that the generosity of my blogger friends continues to amaze me! Right now I'm speaking of Joyti of Darjeeling Dreams, one of the sweetest, brightest girls I know. Though we've been online buddies for a while, it wasn't until last August that I finally got to meet her (and her husband) while visiting San Francisco. Let me just tell you this, she's even sweeter in person than on her blog (and so pretty, too). Joyti blew me away again with her generosity when she recently sent me some fresh yuzu fruit after hearing my lament not having access to it. Not only that, she also sent me a bounty of other citrus, including Meyer lemons! We also decided it would be fun to post our yuzu recipes on the same day. Thanks for the lovely package, Joyti! I can't wait to see what you've made =D.

Yuzu Lemon Mango Cake Shooters
Lately I've been really into the idea of layered cake and other dessert shooters. They're such a lovely way to fit in multiple light desserts at the end of a party...even when you're mostly stuffed ;p. Especially having just added dessert shooters to my menu, I was excited to have this opportunity to test out a different flavor.

The results were delicious but I unfortunately didn't have enough juice to make the curd from entirely yuzu. Subbing in lemon juice to make up the remainder resulted in a curd that, while delicious, tasted as much of lemon as of yuzu. So if, unlike me, you have regular and abundant access to fresh yuzu, I recommend you use it and only it for the curd so that its delicate flavor and floral aroma is allowed to shine.

P.S. - I've finally submitted my graduate school application! Sorry for the long lull between new recipe posts -- I'm finding my way back slowly and surely =D.

Yuzu Mango Coconut Cake Shooters [Printable Recipe]
Cake adapted from VCTOTW;
Makes about 20 1.75-oz. cake shooters

XIAOLU'S NOTES: You'll need to make both the cake and yuzu curd enough in advance that they'll be fully cooled before you assemble the shooters. You'll only need to use about 1/3 of the cake, but you can use the leftover crumbled cake to make delicious cake pops =). If you don't have access to yuzu, you may choose to make lemon curd instead. The flavor won't be the same but it will still be delicious :). If using similarly-sized shot glasses to mine, you will need to purchase mini spoons. Both are available from Amazon: here and here.

2 cups cold heavy cream
1/2 cup powdered sugar, or more to taste
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
Coconut Cake (Recipe below), crumbled
1 1/2 cups diced ripe mango
Yuzu Curd (Recipe below)

Whip cold heavy cream and powdered sugar to soft peaks. Add in vanilla and continue whipping until medium peaks. Transfer whipped cream to a piping bag or zipper-lock plastic bag with a small opening cut in one corner. Transfer cooled yuzu curd to a second piping bag or zipper-lock bag.

Use a spoon smaller than the shot glasses so scoop 1/2 tablespoon of crumbled cake into the bottom of each glass. Next, pipe slightly under tablespoon of whipped cream into each glass, then pipe slightly under a tablespoon of yuzu curd on top of the cream. Sprinkle about 1/2 tablespoon of diced mango into each glass. Spoon 1/2 tablespoon of crumbled cake into each glass. Pipe whipped cream to fill each glass to the top. Finally, decorate the top of each glass with more diced mango. Chill until ready to serve.

Coconut Cake
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp cornstarch
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup coconut milk [NOT low-fat]
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup canola or other neutral oil
3/4 cup sugar
2 tsp pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8 or 9-inch round baking pan with butter or oil. Sift together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl; set aside. Whisk the coconut milk, and vinegar in a measuring cup and set aside for a few minutes to get good and curdled.

In medium bowl, combine the milk mixture, oil, sugar, and vanilla, and beat thoroughly. Pour wet mixture into the pre-sifted dry ingredients and immediately mix until no large lumps remain [small ones are okay].

Pour batter into the greased baking pan, then bake for 25 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted near the center of the cake comes out mostly clean (moist crumbs are OK but wet batter is NOT). Let cool in pan for 15 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack and let cool completely.

Yuzu Curd
Makes about 1 1/2 cups

2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
1 tsp cornstarch, sifted
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup yuzu juice
1 Tbsp finely grated yuzu zest
Pinch of salt
6 Tbsp (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

In a heavy non-reactive saucepan, beat the eggs, yolks, cornstarch, and sugar together until well blended. Stir in yuzu juice, zest, and salt. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly and scraping the sides of the pan, until mixture comes to a boil. Let boil 1 to 2 minutes. Mixture will change from translucent to opaque.

Once curd has boiled 1 to 2 minutes, remove from heat and stir in butter until smooth. Press curd through a strainer suspended over a medium bowl to remove any potential lumps. Allow to cool. Curd can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.


  1. Mmmm, those look so colourful and delicious! Thank you for the recipe.

  2. I love Joyti's blog, and what an awesome and generous gesture from her! Your cake shooters are just adorable and I bet they taste fabulous! Great post, Xiaolu! :) I can't wait to see what Joyti posts!

  3. I would find it so hard to have just one of these shooter. They look so darn delicious.

  4. Wow!! Lovely colors, as vibrant as you are!! Such a wonderful dessert!

  5. Aren't blog friends the best!

    I never find myself too full for dessert, but I love the idea of getting multiple tastes in one shooter! I wonder where I could find yuzu here...

  6. Ohh Joyti is an amazing girl isn't she. This looks delicious.

  7. Those look amazing! What lovely flavors.



  8. This looks so bright and lovely :) I would love to taste some of those lovely Mayerr lemons :)

  9. Красота, да и только....:)))

  10. Lovely cake shooters! I also picked up some blood oranges and Meyer Lemons here this weekend so I could easily see making the curd from those. Yum!

  11. Looks like heaven in a glass! What wonderful, generous blogger's friends you have :) I imagine it tastes like an exotic trifle!

  12. Lovely! I am a big fan of Yuzu lemons, just so refreshing!

  13. I love layers desserts in shot glasses. I make them all the time and it helps to cut down on the calories too.
    I'm heading over to your friend's blog to see what she made!

    Your mango cake shooters looks amazing!

  14. Fantastic! They look great and the flavour combination is sublime!

  15. Mmm love that you paired the yuzu curd with coconut cake, sounds so tasty.

  16. I just love this idea, I keep seeing the cute shooter glasses in stores, what a great use for them!

  17. Ooo, this looks and sounds so delicious! What a great way to highlight the bright yuzus :)
    And thanks for the lovely, lovely words.

  18. Ooh I love the idea of dessert shooters, too! The presentation is sooo nice!

  19. I love this idea! And yuzu! I wish I could get my hands on some,

  20. love the mango and coconut combo!!looks fantastic!

  21. What a nice gesture! Wish someone would send me some yuzu too :) these shooters are adorable, can't wait for my dad's mangoes to be in season. Xoxo

  22. Wow! What a lovely gift - something to bake with! These look yummy!

  23. so pretty! i can totally picture serving this to a crowd & recieve many many compliments :) so lucky u got to meet jyothi, and really sweet of her to take the trouble of sending those gorgeous lemons. blogging world never ceases to amaze me :)

  24. This is brilliant. Love such flavors.
    How amazingly bloggers understand and communicate with each sweet of Jyoti.

  25. looks fantastic. headed over here from joyti's blog. i can see why she finds your site a nice visit. looking forward to getting to know you through this space.

  26. Those are some beautiful shots Xiaolu!
    I don't know if you're familiar with the Global foods store in Woodbridge. I saw there once some sort of citrus that resembled Yuzu. They called them sour oranges. Is it the same thing?

  27. I never heard of Yuzu before and the other day I saw some in the market and was wondering what is it!!! Now, I can't wait to go back and pick some. This looks so stunning!

  28. these look amazing great presentation so what are you going to study?

  29. what a refreshing shooter idea! coconut cake is the perfect foundation for the other flavors. nice!

  30. Xiaolu, these shooters are stunning! I have featured your post in today's Friday Food Fetish roundup. Let me know if you have any objections and thanks for the inspiration...

  31. So pretty! What an excellent photograph and they look so delicious! I love anything with citrus and will have to seek out these beautiful limes.

  32. These are beyond gorgeous! I have not seen any yuzu around :( The blue and yellow is breathtaking. I want some now.

  33. I've been following for a while now and absolutely love your posts. You blog has some of the best food photography I have seen. And these shooters look delicious! I wanted to let you know that I have awarded your blog with the Liebster Award for excellence under 200 followers. Check out my blog post today for more info. Congrats!

  34. Oh I d love those now! they look so refreshing and the colores are mezmerizing! whats yuzu by the way?

  35. Oh wow. These look so good. blogger friends are the best, aren't they? What schools have you applied to?

  36. Love a layered cake! I initially was obsessed with layered breakfasts - muesli, yoghurt, fruit, repeat :) these look divine! & no surprises that Joyti is beautiful, inside and out :) Good luck with your grad school application!
    Heidi xo

  37. Fantastic.. These look so good, is beautiful

  38. This is so pretty. I love all the flavours in this concoction but am only concerned that the mild, elegant flavours of Yuzu may be overwhelmed by the mangoes...

  39. Sorry my English, I'm from Spain and I love love love your recipes!! Yesterday I created a blog, if you want you can visit it at Now I can follow your blog officially. Thank you very much for everything!

  40. I love the idea of placing more than one dessert in a shooter - brilliant! This looks so fresh and delicious - thanks for another lovely recipe!

  41. che delizia golosa hai realizzato, complimenti! Un bacio :)

  42. I like so much your blog. Beautiful photos and a gorgeous dessert, love it.

  43. Xiaolu, first, a huge thank you:) Your stunning pic and wonderful recipe of Yuzu mango coconut cake shooters inspired me make some for visiting friends. I used your recipe as a guideline and made few changes to the recipe. In place of coconut cake, I used a mixture of fresh coconut flavoured with sugar and cardamom and since I couldn’t find any yuzu, I used lemon curd as you suggested. My friends loved it and they even asked for second serving :)


I love hearing from you all! Please leave me a message if you have questions, advice, or just to let me know you stopped by. Your feedback is always very much appreciated. Thanks! <3 Xiaolu