Desserts and Cakes, What's Cookin'
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Sweet potato and coconut cake

This is a typical recipe from Algarve, the south region of Portugal, more specifically from Aljezur. Aljezur is not only a gorgeous small village in the Vicentine Coast, it is also a place with a very fertile and particular kind of soil that produces amazing quality ingredients, being the most famous of those ingredients the unique sweet potatoes and the peanuts a.k.a. alcagoitas, as we (people from Algarve) call them.

I modified a little this recipe from this really nice cookbook. It presents great recipes, some more typical and others more innovative, all containing the sweet potatoes from Aljezur. I should tell you that this is one of my favourite cooking books, it contains really nice photographs and good and simple recipes. Wish there were more projects and books like this one in Algarve.


  • 4 eggs
  • 180 g of sugar
  • 250 g sweet potato purée
  • 100g  of shredded coconut
  • zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon of flour for cakes
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder


Preheat the oven at 180ºC. Boil some sweet potatoes, take of their skins and smash them into a purée. Whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until they form kind of a cream. Add the sweet potato purée, the flour, shredded coconut and the baking powder to the cake batter and whisk a bit more. Whip the egg whites until they mantain their shape and then carefully incorporate them in the mixture. Pour the mixture in a cake tin greased with butter and sprinkled with some flour to form the non-stick surface. Bake it until golden on top. If you see that it is getting brown on top too fast, reduce a bit the temperature. Use the the toothpick technique, if it comes out clean and dry the cake is ready to come out of that oven.

Hope you enjoy it!



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