Crazy for Coconut ! Halekulani Coconut Cake with Chocolate Sauce

We are going to the Halekulani Hotel tonight to see  Kanoe Miller Hula Dance at House Without a Key. Then we are having the Hotel’s famous COCONUT CAKE WITH CHOCOLATE SAUCE!!!!  Tomorrow I’ll be climbing Koko Crater for a butt burner, but it will be worth it. I called the hotel and Chef gave us the recipe, included below.

I found this great article by the by the New York Times 36 Hours in Honolulu and this beautiful photo of Kanoe MIller by Cory Lum for the New York Times…

with Chocolate Sauce

8 Servings

3/4 cup Cake flour
1/3 cup Sugar
1 tsp Baking powder
1 pinch Salt
2 Tbsp Salad oil
1 each Egg, large, whole
2 Tbsp Water
4 each Egg whites
1/4 cup Sugar
1 pinch Cream of tartar

– Preheat oven to 350°. In a small bowl, sift together the cake flour, 1/3 cup sugar, salt and baking powder. Reserve.
– In a separate bowl, combine salad oil, whole egg and water. Add to sifted ingredients to form a batter, and mix until a smooth consistency is obtained.
– In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites and cream of tartar. Gradually add 1/4 cup sugar and continue to whip until a stiff meringue is formed.
– Fold meringue into the batter and mix thoroughly.
– Pour the batter into an ungreased 9″ spring form pan and bake for 20 to 30 minutes. Remove cake from pan, cool upside down on a cooling rack.

1 1/2 cups Milk
1 each Vanilla bean, split in half
1/3 cup Sugar
3 tbsp Flour
4 each Egg yolks
1 1/4 cups Coconut flakes

– Bring the milk and the split vanilla bean to a boil. Reserve and let cool.
– In a mixing bowl combine the sugar, flour and egg yolks, whip together.
– Remove the vanilla bean from the cooled milk and add 1/3 of the milk to the egg mixture, mix well.
– Pour the egg mixture into the pan of remaining milk. Over medium heat, continue stirring until mixture begins to bubble and thicken.
– Remove from heat, cover with aluminum foil and stir occasionally to prevent crusting. When completely cool, add coconut flakes.

1 ½ cups Whipped cream
3 tbsp Sugar
1 ½ cups Coconut flakes

– In a mixing bowl, combine the whipped cream, sugar and 1/2 of the coconut flakes.

Half of this mixture is to be folded into the pastry cream and the remainder is to be used to frost the cake. The remaining half of the coconut flakes is to be used for coating the frosted cake.

1 cup Milk
3/4 lb Chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup Heavy cream
1 tbsp Butter
1/4 cup Sugar

– In a sauce pan, combine the milk and chocolate, bring to a boil. Add the cream, butter and sugar and again bring to a boil. Remove from heat and keep warm.


– Cut the cooled cake into 3 layers.
– Spread pastry cream atop the bottom two layers, assemble the cake.
– Frost with the whipped cream and sprinkle with coconut flakes to finish.
– Slice the cake into desired portions and serve with warm chocolate sauce.

Island Exotica – Sexy Sounds of the South Seas

A bit of south seas trivia…from early 1950’s and 1960’s Martin Denny lived in our  Black Point Property in Honolulu.  This property has been a design project in which we worked to create a luxury home reminiscent of a bygone era where luxury travel and traveling to Hawaii in particular was an exotic destination and a privilege of few.


Many of Martin Denny’s billboard top ten hits of the fifties and sixties were written at his piano in the living room of this home, overlooking the 7 miles of Kahala coastline to Koko Head.  We worked to keep the original architecture from the homes origin in 1930 and updated its interior design with art and artifacts that showcase local art and Who is Martin Denny and why should we know about him?  He was a media phenomenon in the post war years in the US and abroad.  He was a young bandleader who became entranced with the south Pacific and with his unique and innovative music sounds, blended them into a unique genre that became Exotica and started a music movement that is rooted in Hawaii and has inspired many, many artists.  
In January 1954, Don the Beachcomber brought Denny to HonoluluHawaii for a two-week engagement, this began his lifestyle in Honolulu, and the beginning of Exotica.  The Exotica album was recorded in December 1956 and released in 1957. In 1958, Dick Clark hosted Denny on American Bandstand. “Quiet Village” reached #2 on Billboard’s charts in 1959 with the Exotica album reaching #1. 
Here’s an Apple iTunes link to a playlist of Martin Denny, thanks to our friend Brian’s suggestion at Maximum Value Group.


Vintage Hawaiiana Up Next off to Hawaii Today!

We’re off to Honolulu today to work on two Vintage 1930’s Hawaiian homes we have there. Rental Seasons is upon us and we have some work to do. We will be posting this week about Hawaiiana and Hawaii, favorite places, hikes, shopping. Aloha and Mahalo!


We Woke Up in Bed with Cha Cha

Meet Cha Cha, our classic 1964 T Bird Convertible. While working on interior design of o

ur Scottsdale Arizona Home, we had some friends over for drinks who mentioned that they had Cha Cha and that she was for sale. Well, three martinis later, I heard the car wheels squeal as one of the guys went home to retrieve her. It was dark, she was sexy and she wore “jungle red”. Let’s just say, she wasn’t pretty in the morning!

This “three martini” transaction began the process of a new “interior design” project to renovate this classic car. We chose to completely redo the interior upholstery, add air conditioning, and redo all of the faux wood veneer and interior chrome. Mechanically she was in pretty good shape, thank god,  except for the mechanism for the convertible top which we replaced as well.

We added a touch screen media player and reworked the speakers so that new speakers would pipe sound out of the original location of the speakers (up front and between the seats in the back). We gave up some sound quality, but avoided having cumbersome speakers on the door panels and retained the authentic look of this classic car.         

Sotheby’s: Impressionist & Modern Art Evening Sale Tonight

You can register to participate or watch this sale on line live! It’s really fascinating to see what great art is fetching evening in these economic times. Go to Sotheby’s.

Signed van Dongen (bottom center): indistinctly inscribed
Arabe Egypte on the stretcher
40 1/8 by 25 3/4 in  102 by 65.5 cm


A Holiday Idea: Donate Bare Essentials. Keep it Simple

It’s tough times. We are all stressed out on a daily basis more than usual. So, it may not come as quickly this year, but the thought of giving to others during the holiday season will come to you.  I received a mail from the director of Pacific Pride Foundation here in Santa Barbara today that gave me pause. In the mail, David provided a list of bare essentials for us to consider taking to the local food bank. Here is that list as well as a link to Feeding America

Keep it Simple but Keep it in Mind

Frozen Turkeys (for a Happy Thanksgiving)
Paper Towels
Toilet Paper (individual or bulk)
Soap (indiv. bars)
Bottled Water (individual, bottled)
Laundry Detergent (liquid)
Cooking Oil
Salad dressings
Canned Tuna/Chicken

*smaller individual or family size better than larger “bulk” containers.

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Best of Houzz 2014 - Design
This professional's portfolio was voted most popular by the Houzz community.
Awarded on January 30, 2014